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Special Feature


Predictions for 2017

Rohit Talwar, CEO and Katharine Barnett, Concept Editor

Fast Future Publishing

2016 was an unprecedented year, with massive global political

upheaval, the rise of Artificial Intelligence (AI), and centre stage

being taken by issues such as ‘post-truth’, resurgent nationalism, and

technological unemployment. These social, technological and political

shifts have significant potential ramifications for all aspects of global

finance, commerce and markets. Hence, with the world now more

accustomed to such seismic agenda changing developments, the Fast

Future Publishing team have turned our thoughts to the future and

dipped into our recent book The Future of Business and our upcoming

release The Future of AI in Business to suggest what might happen in

the year ahead. Below we provide our 2017 year-end report, outlining

20 critical trends and scenarios we could see emerging, and highlight

their potential impact on economic and financial markets.

and the Disruptive Implications for Finance

and Commerce

Politics, Government and


1. The Presidency as a Business Model

– Following his inauguration in January 2017,

President Donald Trump rides roughshod over

accepted norms of presidential behaviour. After

his first year in office, analysts suggest that he

could easily exceed President Putin’s estimated

net worth of US$200Bn by the end of his first

term, and could ultimately become the world’s

first trillionaire. In this rapidly changing reality,

businesses must become very aware of the new

commercial opportunities that are opening up as

a result of the president’s strategy. Equally vital

will be to see where opportunities may disappear

– a key example being the US car industry which

is being strongly discouraged from investing


2. Who Needs a Constitution?

While opponents desperately seek a mandate for

his impeachment, Trump’s team, his supporters

and the major beneficiaries of his reign seek to

extend the powers of the President. They also

pursue the removal of limits on the duration

of the US presidency and the number of times

an individual can hold the office. This endemic

uncertainty around the presidency could inspire

volatility in financial and currency markets.

3. Brexit Brouhaha

Despite invoking Article 50 in the spring, the UK

government is blocked at every turn by a string

of legal challenges that hamper progress. The

‘UK question’ hyperbole was increasingly used

by both sides in several national debates – from

garnering support by claiming to represent the

political will of the UK electorate on the one side

to scaremongering on the risk to the UK economy

and the European project on the other. This could

lead to a number of companies wanting to exit

the UK. However some of the incentives created

around the future of Britain could encourage

Rohit Talwar

Founder and CEO

Rohit Talwar is a global futurist, founder

of Fast Future and an award-winning

speaker noted for his provocative content.

He advises global firms, industries and

governments on how to survive, thrive,

spot and manage emerging risks and

develop innovative growth strategies in

the decade ahead. His interests include

the evolving role of technology in business

and society, emerging markets, the

future of education, sustainability, and

embedding foresight in organisations.

Katharine Barnett

Concept Editor

Katharine works on creating, developing

and editing a variety of content for Fast

Future Publishing. She has a broad range

of futurist interests including societal

and behavioural norms, digital and

information ethics, biomedical ethics,

genomics and pharmacology, and the

future economies of the developing world.