Global megatrends: driving new connections between science and industry
A personal touch
The second megatrend is 'A Personal Touch'.
Products and services are becoming increasingly personalised. We are currently experiencing a second wave of innovation aimed at understanding, and supplying, the intimate needs of individual customers en masse.
In 1970 the services sector represented 55 per cent of the Australian economy. Today it is over 75 per cent (PMSEIC, 2008).
One of the aspects pushing this trend is the increase in computer power and the rise of the internet in recent decades. Information is increasingly accessible to both individuals and companies.
This development has provided marketers with the opportunity to customise products for demanding customers increasingly overwhelmed with choice.
As companies and organisations know more about their customers they can provide services they already know are right for them.
This has some advantages, such as personalised health services, which can recognise the particular needs of individual patients.
It does, however pose some serious privacy problems for those bodies who find themselves in possession of vast amounts of personal data.
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Prime Minister's Science, Engineering and Innovation Council (PMSEIC). 2008. Science and Technology-Led Innovation in Services for Australian Industries [external link]. Report of the PMSEIC Working Group, 3 April, Prime Minister's Science, Engineering and Innovation Council, Canberra.
World Economic Forum. 2009. Global Risks 2010: A Global Risk Network Report [external link]. World Economic Forum, Geneva, Switzerland.