According to our clients, what makes us different, is our powerful ability to generate the unexpected. This arises from a combination of provocative, innovative thinking that takes us far beyond our own proprietary processes, and our ability to really find future opportunities that lead to category creation and leadership.
Recommendations for The Futures Lab, Inc.
"The Futures Lab process helped Ford translate leading external trends and internal business acumen into actionable innovative new product ideas and strategies.  Their unique process leverages the knowledge of internal and external subject matter experts to deliver a roadmap for success."

Christine Stasiw, SVP Global Futuring, Global Consumer Insights, Ford Motor Company
"Working with The Futures Lab is a real treat: it is an inspirational and intellectual journey where both client and agency take a deep dive into a world that human kind will create in 5 to 10 years from now. A global virtual network and in-depth field work with real experts combined with lateral thinking across categories, consumer segments and geographies leads to amazing new insights and the creation of new innovation platforms."

Juan W. Plijnaar Senior Director Consumer Marketing Philips Consumer Lifestyle
"When you look at the globe and at the future simultaneously, the view is so big and complex that you get lost.  I found the key in The Futures Lab process, where it is possible to find your way by starting from who you really are."

Candido Peterlini Director of Automotive Innovation Fiat Group Torino, Italy
"The Futures Lab delivered outstanding work.  We greatly appreciate the time and care that you put into the analysis of our business and the direction it created."

Lisa Dollinger SVP Strategy & Communications, Clear Channel
"Derek has that vital quality as a futurologist - an ability to weave together apparently disparate patches of our future to create a compelling canvas for clients. It's these points of connection that make his commentary so intriguing."

Chris Grantham, Circular Economy Portfolio Director at IDEO
"Derek has undertaken numerous projects successfully for Philips Electronics. He and his futures process have managed to provide unexpected future context and direction supported by detailed research and expertise. This provided us with great insights for exciting products."

Leon Ramselaar, Managing Director | Experienced marketing and digital transformation executive, Philips Electronics
"We wanted to see around the corner and down the road in the construction industry to excite our members and audience at our largest show. What came next was more of a surprise, internally it has become what we try and do daily. We see things we never saw before, in terms of how will it change the industry and therefore change our membership and ultimately our show.  The job done by Derek was wonderful, but the transformation to the organization was the bonus."

Al Cervero, Senior Vice President Construction, Mining and Utility Association of Equipment Manufacturers
"The Futures Lab did a wonderful job in taking the time in the front end of the project to understand our industry, business, strengths and weaknesses. Once they had foundation of knowledge, they were able to leverage a variety of tools and resources that enabled them reach conclusions and make solid recommendations, which will serve as a guidepost for our journey into the future."

Derek Bowen Senior Brand Director, Henkel
"Derek has the amazing ability to bring the future forward. No matter what the topic, he brings together expertise, vision and madness to unveil where trends may go. And unlike many others, he brings a good level of underpinning, facts and theory as evidence. Where I worked with him, Derek made the difference to propel big topics forward."

Joe Walicki, Vice President, Johnson Controls
"Derek is unique. He is both capable of future thinking but at the same time hugely knowledgeable about the businesses he works with. Derek has an enthusiasm and energy that is infectious and inspires all those that work with him. I would happily work with Derek on any project."

Rein Hintzen, Driving marketing, innovation, learning & business transformation at Philips
"When it came time to review and update the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) strategic plan, we knew we needed a facilitator who could help us look out 10 years and how technology might change the landscape for the association, as well as the exhibitions industry. The IAEE Board of Directors agreed to hire a futurist, rather than a traditional strategic planning consultant. Derek Woodgate helped us in identifying future leverage points and future scenarios, the outcome of which is the association’s strategic plan for ensuring the association’s success, and more importantly, the continued success of the exhibitions industry."

Cathy Breden, Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, The International Association of Exhibitions and Events
"I had the pleasure to work with Derek as part of the positioning & innovation strategy project for Philips – the future of television. We also worked on the future of men’s grooming and medical projects. His vision about the future was spot on and his input proved to be vital for our category. He is extremely knowledgeable and backed up by a great network of experts around the globe. Besides, Derek is a highly inspiring, fascinating, and fun person; a real treat to work with. If you want to future proof your strategy and willing to look more then three years ahead of time, then Derek is your man."

Peter Bruunbauer, Snr. Manager, Brand Intelligence and Strategy, Philips
"The Futures Lab met and exceeded our expectations. Your work forms the basis of our future direction."

Steve Tooker SVP & GM Dial Personal Cleansing
"The Futures Lab created a range of products that fundamentally changed our business and the category, by leveraging, yet re-contextualizing our skills and resources"

John Cowling, President Casio Electronics
"Derek is a creative and energetic person that helps people and company to open their eyes through an innovative and effective approach."

Candido Peterlini, Head of Consumer Interaction Management at Volkswagen AG
"Derek is an accomplished futurist with an established, mature methodology. His futurism is a practical assessment of trends, creating realistic scenarios for probable futures that feed into realistic plans for business evolution. He has a powerful creative vision, but his creativity is tempered by an understanding of practical business imperatives. He also has strong logistics skills that were essential to the success of some of our collaborations, especially via Plutopia Productions. I highly recommend Derek as futurist and as producer of visionary future-focused events."

Jon Lebkowsky, CEO & Web Strategist, Polycot Associates
"Derek is a visionary, creative entrepeneur in the field of strategy, innovation and concept development. Working with Derek creates a spark in enthousiasm with everybody he gathers around himself. He is outspoken, inspiring and also able to listen well to what people say and to what they do not say. I was fortunate working with Derek for a number of strategic projects that covered five continents and various categories and where both consumers and professional experts were involved. The results exceeded our expectations and were a paradigm shift in product strategy for the company."

Juan Plijnaar, Lecturer Marketing and Strategy at Hotelschool The Hague, Marketing consultant and Partner at Brandwave
"We collaborated in 2006 to develop a new kind of head mount display (ImSpace) for immersive applications that provided full field of view at low cost, based on work I had done for NASA. Derek and I created a thorough business plan and sought funding while I developed the concept models. Derek was very focused on the tasks required, and we worked very well together. We were 10 years ahead of the curve. Derek was creative, imaginative, challenging, and charming, and great fun to work with. He's the future man."

Brian Park Design Manager at Halliburton
"Derek possesses keen insights into global emerging cultural trends and how they are linked together. His knowledge base is deep and detailed orientated. He gave us the platform for our future."

Rob Campanell Sr. Data Analyst at Whole Foods Market
"Derek has a thorough appreciation for how connected the world is and how innovation can ripple through different seemingly disconnected worlds creating new connections and new means of communication and operation.  I worked on a future strategy project with Derek and he was very skilled at listening to the different perspectives and finding threads of commonality, unraveling them and their preconceptions so they could be woven into new ideas of substance. Derek is always a pleasure to work with and brings out the creativity in those with whom he engages, and finds a way to turn that creativity into actionable futures."

Julian Wait, VP of Technology, Virtual MGA as well as at CSC, Austin
"Derek is a very visionary futurist and a good friend. I love his passion and his candor. He got me thinking about both Coremetrics and Bazaarvoice in a very different light over the course of our friendship. That kind of thinking can lead to big things."

Brett Hurt, CEO and Co-founder at data.world
"Derek has super grasp of "what's next" and is able to translate that into an actionable strategy. Plus, he's just great to work with -- always a "can do" approach to difficult challenges. It's a rare combination, and as a result I'd recommend Derek without hesitation."

Dave Evans, VP, Social Strategy at Lithium Technologies
"Even within the field of 'Futurology', Derek blew us away with the number and quality of fantastic new trends and innovations he is in touch with. However, the secret of his success is the ability to link these marvels and knowledge to the business issue we were facing right now."

Ashley Smith, Senior Business Director, Insighting Innovation and Workshopping, InSites Consulting and Philips
"The Futures Lab have been a tremendous help to GSD&M and many of our clients.  They step back from day-to-day marketing issues to assess what the future holds for various products, brands and companies.  The resulting forecasts have allowed us to create agency services that will meet our clients' needs in a changing advertising world, and have prepared several of our clients to develop new products that will address future consumer needs."

Andrew Teagle, Director of Marketplace Planning. GSD&M
"The Futures Lab created a totally unique program and approach that revolutionized the way we ultimately launched WorldSpace."

Alan Ginsburg SVP Global Strategy WorldSpace Corporation
"Derek is a kind of consumer-insights virtuoso, a visionary who doggedly analyzes the meaning of consumer experience to generate rare insights about how people relate to their products now and in the future.  I have not yet encountered another person in the business world so resolutely focused on bridging the gap between product development and the intricate, murky, sometimes contradictory ways in which people relate to technology. He brings rare passion and decades of history to pushing product development to be all it can be for end-users. If you had been listening to him back in the 1980's I suspect you would have been among that tiny cohort who knew the Internet was coming to transform business and culture.  He is the go-to guy for critical insights into how social, cultural, artistic and technological developments feed back into each other, and how these redefine how consumers think and behave."

Owen McNally, PhD, Research Analyst Consultant at Out On The Corner Investments
"Derek is a genius, plain and simple. He sees beyond the horizon of tradition and past the limitations of the average individual by asking creative questions, conducting intense research, exploring alternatives, and being open to opportunities. As a result, all he touches turns to gold. You will find yourself enlightened with each interaction with Derek."

Lisa Wallace Nonprofit Account Director, Equality Champion, VetForce Veteran Advocate
"Derek is one of the most talented and dedicated professional I know. He is honest and direct. He is very knowledgeable and sharing in his expertise. I recommend him highly as an expert in the area of "futures" and as a partner in uncovering a reality to come."

Jim Ronay, Skilled, experienced assistance in creating or implementing your vision., Ronay Enterprises
"Derek is engaging, interesting, and involved no matter the project or subject matter he is working on. I could always count on Derek to bring a unique perspective and expansive thinking to creating ideas."

James L. Martin, Chief Strategic Officer at Public & Company and Vendor Inc
"Derek always brought creative thinking to the highest level, bringing unique ideas to the table as well as a clear vision of the future."

Nancy George. Branding, Advertising & Integrated Marketing Y&R, and STEEL Branding
"Derek is extremely thorough with his research work, and having seen multiple presentations by him, I can also say that he is a very engaging speaker. He is one of the few experts in the Futures space who have a strong command of a wide variety of fields. Derek can help you gain insight into the future, plus plan and prepare to capitalize on a set of positive futures for your company."

Anand Chhatpar CTO at Growth Champ
"I first met Derek at a 2013 Association of Professional Futurists conference and then had the pleasure to collaborate with him more when he co-organized the 2014 STEAM 3 conference in Austin, TX. and again at GSU, Atlanta in 2015. Derek is thoughtful and inspiring. He has the unique ability to help others visualize and experience the art of the possible. Besides being a brilliant conversationalist, he has a great sense of humor and is a pleasure to team with. I highly recommend Derek."

Elaine Raybourn, Research Scientist at Sandia National Laboratories
"I've been on receiving end of Derek's perspective and he's great at weaving together many varied future scenarios into a map of possibilities that are clear and compelling. Plus he's a presenter with an edge of humor, who makes it easy for audiences to hear opportunities. Highly recommended. Derek possesses keen insights into global emerging cultural trends and how they are linked together. His knowledge base is deep and detailed orientated."

David Amdal, Communication Strategy and Design Firm, Crisp + Clear = Compelling
"Derek is one of the smartest guys I have run across. He has the ability to see beyond the usual clutter and get to the heart of complex matters. This ability is rare and under appreciated. He has a wide range of interests that he can draw from and put together plans of action from those interests."

Jerry Roane CEO Roane inventions Incorporation
"I booked Derek as the Keynote Speaker for a panel event organized by Left Brain | Right Brain at the RISE entrepreneurship conference in Austin, TX.  He generously donated his time to aspiring music entrepreneurs and musicians. With minimal guidelines, the content of his speech was spot-on, easy to digest, and incredibly enlightening. He managed to seamlessly weave together all the different topics discussed during the week-long conference, from musical entrepreneurship to the future of the music industry. On top of that, he's genuine, interesting, and stayed long after the event to answer all of the attendees' questions. I would be thrilled to work with Derek again, and recommend him as a speaker at any music conference or entrepreneurial-related event."

Nicole Conser, Marketing Director at Astrotech
"Derek and The Futures Lab have the great ability to bring new creative insights that make possible to see problems and consequently solutions in a completely new perspective."

Maite Ardevol, Sustainability and International Business Strategy, ACCIÓ, Government of Catalonia
"In 2006 McElroy Translation Co. engaged futurist Derek Woodgate of “The Futures Lab.”  This was a turning point for me as a leader as I transcended from operational coping to engage in strategic “future proofing.” The action items from our work with The Futures Lab gave McElroy a jumpstart on developing a collaborative work environment, integrating machine translation in workflow, and identifying ways to add value for clients via consulting on the best combinations technology, processes and humans. I’ll be the first to admit that just a few years ago much of what we discussed with The Futures Lab seemed more like futuristic psycho-babble than business strategy.  Just two years later while attending the Localization World Conference, I reviewed the outcome of The Futures lab exercise—with a new lens. If you are not innovating you will suffer, because someone else will innovate in your absence.  It became clear not only had we taken the right decision to go with The Futures lab, but by doing so we had taken a market leadership position."

Shelly Orr Priebe, President of McElroy Translation Company, Austin, Texas
Recommendations from fellow futurists
"Derek combines a great futures background with a deep knowledge of and immersion in popular culture. A truly creative futurist..."

Peter Bishop. Exec Director, Teach the Future
As Derek Woodgate, President of The Futures Lab often says "The ways of thinking that typifies progressive culture are so distinctive and provocative that using them almost always leads to different and provocative ways of creating practical innovations for businesses in the future’. It is in this creative bridging that the creative genius of The Futures Lab is most recognizable, making this approach a unique paradigm in the futures field".

Oliver W. Markley, An Emeritus Professor of Human Sciences and Studies of the Future, University of Houston.
"Derek is highly admired amongst the futures community for the quality of his thinking and the excellent work he does in helping turn future insights into powerful, visionary and practical new business concepts for his clients. He is a thought and practice leader amongst thought leaders."

Rohit Talwar – Futurist, Speaker
"Derek is a superlative organizer of foresight experiences that help clients think above and beyond where they are today, and compels them to raise their game. He pays attention to the smallest details of place and process, and this all adds up to an excellent and transformative experience for his Futures Lab clients. His personality is warm and optimistic, and he gives everyone a chance to be heard, but doesn't let small talk dominate any discussion. His facilitation, organization skills, and foresight vision are uniquely advanced."

John M Smart, Futurist and Foresight Consultant
"Derek is the facilitator's facilitator. He can help a room full of diverse people envision a variety of possible futures and then engage participants to creatively problem-solve those futures. Derek is able to bring your future to you in a way that empowers you to bring about the changes you and your organization need to thrive. I highly recommend Derek if you or your organization need to visualize the future creatively and effectively."

Honoria Starbuck, Professor Art Institute of Austin
"Derek is a brilliant and dedicated futurist. Clients can definitely rely on him for dogged research and meticulous findings."

Ann Feeney, Research and Data Analytics Specialist for SHSMD at American Hospital Association
"Derek is one of the most authentic, richly talented people I have ever met --- as a human being, as an observer of the human enterprise, and as a futurist. In either capacity, you are in for a treat."

Jan (Johannes) Amkreutz, Futurist Consultant, Author.
"Derek is unique. He is both capable of future thinking but at the same time hugely knowledgeable about the businesses he works with. Derek has an enthusiasm and energy that is infectious and inspires all those that work with him. I would happily work with Derek on any project."

Simon Ratcliffe, Founding Strategy Partner, Yourfuture
"Derek is an amazing guy, very smart and creative and futuristic. You'll love to work with him and his team."

Pero Micic, PhD, Founder and CEO of Future Management Group AG
"Derek and I were colleagues through the Association of Professional Futurists where I learned first hand of his creativity, thoroughness, and professionalism. His book, Future Frequencies, was one that broadened my view of the qualities of a professional futurist and pointed to non-traditional ways to learn and forecast that would be useful to a broad range of clients. His insights are provocative and the implications practical."

Jim Burke Director, Forecasting and Innovation Solutions at TASC, Inc.
"Derek is very creative and innovative in his Futures work by combining art and futures methods to entertain and inform. He is a particular favorite of the younger generations which, of course, are the future of our world."

Terry Collins Principal at Integral Futures
"Derek is a superb leader/coach for organizations that need to think differently. He brings great tools and processes that he's proven in high stakes situations, but he also brings a force of personality and creativity to each project. I do closely similar work to Derek's and I routinely learn something new each time we work together or just catch up."

John Mahaffie, Futurist; writing, speaking & consulting on change and the future, Principal, Leading Futurists LLC
"Derek is an accomplished futurist. He provides unique insights into the changes shaping the world today. Derek combines powerful insight with a deep intellect to help you shape new models, products and services that will be successful now and into these rapidly changing times. Provocative fun and dedicated, he is the ideal business partner to help you shape successful futures. His last book Future Frequencies in 2005 provided insights into the future that we are now living today in 2012. I have no hesitation recommending Derek."

Janine Cahill Co-founder and CEO at Kitticode, Teazl, Hidden Cities
"Derek is an enthusiastic, knowledgeable, insightful futurist, who is also a good listener and a pleasure to work with."

Bruce Lloyd, Emeritus Professor of Strategic Management at London South Bank University
"Derek's innovative future brainstorming sessions are awesome -- delivering tons of value to clients and participants."

Jason Asbahr Chief Technology Officer at Freeform Development, Inc.
"I know Derek in his capacity as President of the Central Texas World Future Society. In that capacity, he was responsible for the continued growth and success of the organization. I found Derek's ideas very wide-ranging. He has an ability to look for the changes that artists perceive as an early indicator of societal change. He is extremely insightful. Derek produces great content on that is helpful for anyone that needs to anticipate future trends."

Cliff Collard, Lead Remedy Administrator at Accenture Federal Services
Ford Motor Company, global
Multiple projects: including Ford, Land Rover and Volvo. Creating a range of new vehicles targeted at specific consumer groups. This involved totally redefining the purpose and use of the windshield and the body structure, as well as smart seating and driving systems. Also worked on redefining market categories and segment approaches and business models.
Philips, global
We worked on multiple projects for a variety of Philips’ divisions around the globe, including large-scale multi-continent projects that led to several new categories and marketplaces for the brand. These fully -fledged foresight projects resulting in unique solutions for VOIP home systems, future televisions, gaming interfaces, sensory and ambient augmentation, health, grooming and wellness programs, future learning tools as well as kitchen and catering equipment. We have worked on Philips projects for nearly decade
Intel, USA (Brazil & Indonesia)
We conducted two separate projects for Intel, the first on the company’s future potential in Brazil and the second on Indonesia as it becomes an addition to BRICS. Both projects resulted in several future scenarios delivered through gamified, interactive, immersive installations that helped the Intel teams, including their country management to bring the scenarios to life at "Living the Future" workshops. The outputs helped the development of strategic platforms for Intel’s future development of Brazil and Indonesia.
Fiat Automobiles S.p.A., Italy
We undertook major projects for FIAT, during which we created an extensive range of new vehicles and parts of vehicles for Fiat, Lancia and Alfa Romeo, involving areas such as media, health, alternative powertrains, ecology, communications systems, urban interfaces, etc. all aimed at launches between 2012 and 2020.
Coca-Cola, UK and USA
Our foresight work for Coca Cola has studied and created future scenarios and strategies for specific aspects of their business such as water science and new approaches to carbonization as well as potential future containers, health and future lifestyles. This has involved leveraging our scientific knowledge, technology systems thinking and a deep understanding of the potential future consumer and his/her world.
AKZO Nobel, global
This is another multi-project client with whom we work in collaboration with our sister company Your Future (London). One of the first projects involved a multi-country (USA, Brazil, China, Japan, Russia, UK, India) where we developed detailed future pathways for the AKZO-Nobel brands. The project included our conducting Frontline Panels in each country to support our foresight work. Over the years our foresight work for this client has included future studies on everything from future of living spaces to future coatings, influential technologies such as nanotechnology, affective technologies and artificial intelligence to incorporating the impact of biomimicry and changing human desires and future living spaces.
Tyson Foods/Cobb-Vantress
We developed new business strategies for addressing discontinuous changes within the poultry industry, and future developments in the areas of global health, personal nutrition and consumer values. Opportunities leveraged future developments in biotech, genetic engineering, and corporate services all based upon providing products with enhanced healthy benefits and improved poultry welfare.
Nestlé, USA and Europe
We created preferred future scenarios and action plans for the future of direct marketing, specifically for the infant nutrition category. Also developed ideas for merged convenience and health benefits for Stouffers, Hot Pockets, and Lean Cuisine product lines. For the head office we undertook a project on the future of superfoods, health and energy driven ingredients and formulations.
Johnson Controls
We created a completely new category for JCI to supplement their traditional seat business, bringing together their controls and seating divisions to create entertainment seating. The project involved a comprehensive foresight project, followed by the development of a future focused strategic plan with a 10 year horizon.
Microsoft, USA
At the behest of the top executives we were asked to provide expert advice on the future potential of integrated media bundles and communications systems. The work involved consideration of the potential and longevity of certain emerging technologies and the way they could be migrated across future landscapes and domains. It also required a deep understanding of the potential for future hybridization and the emergence of disruptors and bottom-up peer-to-peer innovation.
Henkel North American Consumer Goods, Europe and USA
Over a three year period we undertook extensive foresight projects for Dial soaps, Purex detergents and Renuzit. Although the scope of the projects differed, we worked on a 10 year time horizon and we developed product scenarios that aimed at totally disrupting the marketplace, principally based upon developments in biochem. nanotech and new materials and methods for packaging and product delivery. Big part of all the projects was concerned with sustainability and health awareness.
Clear Channel, USA
We have undertaken multiple projects involving the future of digital radio and the future of venues and live performances, leading to the development of new arenas facilitating telepresence and sensory enhancement.
Kellogg’s, USA, France, Brazil, China and UK
Our first project for Kellogg’s involved a multi-country foresight project (Brazil, France, USA and China), creating probable futures for future cereals consumption. This was followed by other projects looking specifically at aspects such as healthy eating, organic fast foods, smarter foods and delivery systems, the clean food movement, roles for augmented reality and accelerated farming, including robots, nanotechnology and four season farming as well as food design, body wisdom and metabolic profiling and rapid DNA analysis. These projects were undertaken in collaboration with our sister company Your Future (London).
Intercontinental Hotels, global
We completed a few projects for this client, the last one which studied the Future Guest Experience was in tandem with IDEO. Here we dealt with the changing human, identities, archetypes, lifestyles, sensory enhancement, biometrics, social engagement and opportunities for self-discovery. productive adaptive amenities, etc. On previous projects, we had created future scenarios and directional strategies to leverage the future role of hotels and their restaurants, disruptive architecture, operational systems, AI and data systems.
VF, Europe-wide
The largest corporate clothing company in the world and my previous employer. This was TFL’s first project and started in 1995 while I was still SVP of Strategic Planning and Marketing at the European arm of the company. I commissioned the project with Grey and it was completed after I left VF to work on the project as a consultant to Brand Futures (which is now our sister company – Your Future (London). The project was one of the largest we have been involved with and basically meant creating a future path for the company’s Jeanswear brands within a massively changing marketplace that had been disrupted by everything from flow replenishment systems, early adaptive manufacturing, new textile technologies, outsourcing, fashion and lifestyle shifts and new global players.
AEM (Association of Equipment Manufacturers), global
It was and remains a great honor to be invited to undertake what turned out to be virtually a two-year project and to see much of the outcome put in place at the end of the project. We were engaged to create a future for the construction industry while simultaneously delivering insights on how this will impact and transform he association itself. The work interconnected with the association’s infrastructure 2050 project, which enabled us to also see the impact of our inputs at the US government level. This was a fully blown foresight project so covered deep consideration of potential influences as broad as emerging construction technologies, AI and data management, future workforces and jobs, the future of transportation and living environments., etc. The outputs from the futures study provided the architecture and content for the Future Experience a first-time concept at the AEM-produced CONEXPO-CON AGG 2017 show in Las Vegas – one of the world’s largest shows where AEM demonstrated some of the latest inventions in the industry – even the first 3D printed Excavator and the Hyperloop as well as a Future Job Kiosk developed through our subsidiary the FutureXperience Lab.
IAEE (The International Association of Exhibitions and Events), global
This was virtually a year-long project to create a 10-year horizon landscape for the future of exhibitions and events. Its purpose was to provide the platform for IAEE’s future strategic plan aimed at restructuring the association and identifying future leverage points and future scenarios, that would futureproof the association’s success, and more importantly, the continued success of the exhibitions industry.
Casio, Japan and UK
We changed the original scope of the project by taking the company out of the timepiece market into a completely new category of wrist devices with infinite opportunities, by fusing breakthrough technologies with the wrist as “real estate”. We developed communications opportunities that directly leveraged the uniqueness of the product technologies, creating new advertising opportunities in areas such as games and synthetic environments and potential for the total transformation of their retail stores and future interfaces with consumers through in-store VR demonstration bays that simulate user experience and optimize product knowledge.
Nokia, UK and Scandinavia
In 2001 and 2002, we developed the first comprehensive program related to music for the mobile phone. Nokia, ultimately signed with the big four and included the first ringtones, streaming video, downloadable tracks, jukebox, links to artists, a music store and music-centric devices. This followed on from an earlier project that we worked on in the nineties between Barclays Bank, Intertrust Technologies Corporation and the music industry to create a vision for the future of payments and rights. The project titled Magex became a comprehensive P2P and P2M payments platform that we helped launch at SXSW in 2002. It led to our work with Blastro on the music video front.
Showtime, USA
In 2001, we developed a future media landscape incorporating emerging technologies, future consumer attitudes and desires, as well as potential interaction and participation interfaces, in line with future media and entertainment equipment and devices development. In tandem, we created a potential future program content development plan by genre, interface and consumer segment, based upon futures research into social and cultural change and their impact upon emerging societal preferences, including ideas round the future of social networks. We extended the network’s potential consumer engagement and traction beyond the audio-visual including fully interactive shows and interfaces with synthespians.
Worldspace, UK, USA Africa and Latin America
One of our first projects undertaken with Brand Futures (London) back In 1998-99 This was real early adopter of digital communications. We helped develop the first ever global audio satellite system covering Asia, Africa and Latin America. We created a future vision for the project supported by marketing packages and future relevant programs that would attract major global corporations to the areas via customized programming and channels supported by unique receiver networks and devices, such as the Satellite-to-Go Package and the Tongshi DAMB-R device, which fits in the palm of your hand.
Blastro Networks, USA
We created a future platform for a sustainable entertainment network, which became the largest urban music on-demand entertainment site in the world. Developed a long-term future-relevant strategic plan to leverage emerging broadcasting avenues, digital convergences, future devices and interfaces. Led the company into new entertainment areas beyond music, such as comedy, film and games.
MTV, Europe
In 1998, we developed a future of media landscape for 2010 against which MTV created its recent reprogramming. The project identified emerging technologies, future consumer desires and attitudes, as well as potential interaction and participation interfaces, in line with future media, virtual studio techniques, entertainment equipment and production devices development. This area of expertise has remained a strength within or armory and has led to work for numerous other clients and the design of university courses on the future of multimedia and related technologies.
BBC, UK
We have worked with BBC Magazines on a consumer context study using foresight research to determine the future social and cultural structures of various regions of the UK. We also considered the future of publishing, delivery devices and changes in the way the semantic web would influence communications, narrative and conversation and how machine learning would impact the translation side. Separately, we worked on a small project with the BBC central office on the future of TV studios in terms of equipment, delivery and audience interfaces and engagement.
Harlequin, Canada
A comprehensive foresight project aimed at future-proofing Harlequin’s long-term growth by identifying future trends, lifestyles, emerging issues etc. We developed detailed future scenarios and actionable ideation platforms that informed future product concepts. Based on three separate time horizons of 5, 10 and 15 years, the project deliverables were to ensure Harlequin’s future relevance and ultimately yield new, innovative, fictional entertainment.
VNU, USA
We developed a landscape on the future of print media, which was particularly relevant from the distribution viewpoint. We also explored how this would impact the changing production and creative processes and the effect these would have on the future workforce. The project considered the likely, disruptive impact of artificial intelligence on workforce reduction, but simultaneously drew attention to the massive possibilities that it could bring in terms of advanced research technologies.
Shell, UK and Netherlands
We set up an innovations operation, ideation and innovation processes, interdisciplinary structure and new business platforms and products to meet the future demands of the motor and transportation industries. This involved a future landscape against each of the milestones that took account of future mergers and acquisitions, alternative fuels, market fragmentation, new materials, future services, ITS, propulsion systems, environmental and legislative changes. Subsequently we have worked on the future of gas stations and support services in the era of digitalization, robotics, smart interfaces, and changing materials and fuels, as well as the shifts in transport utilization, work and urban migration.
Pemex, Mexico
We undertook a comprehensive foresight project for Mexico’s state oil company together with our Mexican office. We helped produce the long-term blueprint for the political lobbying to convert the industry to allow more private investment to future-proof its existence. This required a detailed examination of the global oil and gas business and in particular the economic benefits that such a strategic change would mean for Mexico.
ICI – Dulux, UK
Separately from our later projects with AKZO-NOBEL, Dulux’s parent company, we produced a major report on the future of the home with regard to new architectural and construction techniques, new urban development approaches, home segmentation and usage, the future of competitive categories leading to the development of new products such as electro charged paints, heat adapting coatings, and nanocoatings etc.
GlaxoSmithKline, UK
We developed an internal trend monitoring system, which was originally driven by TFL, as well as a report on the future of distribution management technologies, with a view to the future of big data, AI and emerging communications technologies. The project was set against a future's landscape that considered emerging advances in biochem, nanotechnology, AI and new materials for encapsulation as well as delivery systems.
Nissan, USA and Japan
Worked on a futures project to consider new spatial narratives, especially in terms of creating more interior space and greater connection between the driver and the outside world leading to the world’s first ever full glass roof vehicle, and systems for easy ingress-egress. We worked with NASA habitat engineers and the designers from private aircraft, Airstream, etc. and technologists/robotics scientists to understand how to integrate emerging operation, communications and media technologies and new materials.
New Holland, Italy and USA
We developed a comprehensive program of tractors and auxiliary machinery and systems embracing areas such as convergent machinery management, improved ergonomics communications and drivability, remote maintenance and driverless machinery, ecologically advanced equipment and farming techniques.
Brinker, USA
We designed a future dining and restaurant landscape based on an innovative consumer segmentation and choice motivation approach. An important aspect to the project was the development of engaging spaces and the ability to sensory enhance and expand the visual illusion of the environment. The development of new offerings for Chili’s and Macaroni Grill included teenage specials, hip for oldies, mood food, high energy and nutritional and taste jammers.
McElroy Translation, USA
We undertook a very detailed strategic future-proofing project for McElroy, one of the world leaders in localization and translation. Our work was very disruptive to the industry and led to McElroy taking a steal on the market. We developed processes and platforms around machine learning as well as collaborative based operations enabling on-line language learning systems and translation services.
Pringle of Scotland
To the latter part of the 20th century we had a number of luxury fashion clients who were leveraging not just future expertise, but also our founders many years in the fashion/clothing business. This included Ballantyne and Pringle cashmere, and the Etienne Aigner collection. These were fully comprehensive foresight projects aimed at future proofing these highly successful, mature brands.
Hugo Boss, Europe and USA
Together with our sister company Brand Futures, now YourFuture (London), we developed a future vision for the a new men's fragrance under the Hugo Boss label. Owned by P&G the work was aimed at shaping the long term future of the brand and the product. We also researched the brand's ability to migrate to related products and expand into other market areas such as the Middle East and the USA.
Cadbury Schweppes, UK
With both of these companies two centuries old, not surprisingly it was time to look to the next 200 years. However we thought we would start with a 10-15 year horizon, researching and creating primarily new product categories for these highly successful brands. As far as Cadbury was concerned, we considered everything from the expansion of consumer cohuts with a lot of emphasis on luxury and health conscious at the top and exciting new children's shapes and hybrids. With Schweppes on the other hand our work involved looking at the future of enterprise arhcitecture, new processing technlogies and packaging.
Our work is beyond strategic planning, taking a preferred futures approach rather than traditional baseline projections.