OUR WORLD 2025
SOCIETY

Societal structures are changing at an unprecedented pace as a growing number of populations emerge from poverty, and people live longer, healthier lives, and find reliable employment. This rapid societal transformation is fuelled by increasing global connectedness, technology innovation, and rising productivity.

SOCIETY

The global population as a whole has never previously enjoyed the kind of access it now has to the same opportunities or earned higher levels of economic wealth per capita.

Over the next decade more than half of the world’s population will have access to the Internet, and renewable power generation will accelerate progress towards the goal of universal access to electricity.

But many megacities will struggle to provide adequate infrastructure and municipal services to its citizens, even as these same cities demonstrate leadership on climate change and emerge as powerful entities on the geopolitical scene.

SOCIETY: DEMOGRAPHY

SOCIETY: DEMOGRAPHY

POPULATION GROWTH

Increasing by more than 80 million a year, the global population will reach 8 billion by 2025. Most of this population growth will occur in today’s developing countries. While the average fertility rate in the rest of the world is converging towards 2, the fertility rate in Africa is expected to remain above 4 throughout the coming decade.

Our_World_1A.jpg

AGEING POPULATION

Technology and economic growth enable people to live longer. Those aged over 60 years will increase from 11.7% of the global population in 2013 to about 15% in 2025, reaching more than 20% in 2050.

Old age dependency ratio: Number of people aged over 65 per 100 people aged 15-64

2000 2015 2030

Source: United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division (2013)

UPSKILLING IN ASIA AND AFRICA

Education levels in Africa and Asia are rising, gradually empowering their populations to seek new employment and business opportunities. By 2030 China alone will have more educated people of working age than Europe and North America together.

Our_World_1C.jpg

DRAMATICALLY EXPANDING MIDDLE CLASS

The number of middle class consumers globally is set to grow from 1.8 billion in 2010 to 4.9 billion in 2030, with Asia accounting for 85% of that growth.

Middle class population by region in 2009 and 2030

2009 2030

Source: Kharas H. and G. Gertz (2010)

SOCIETY: CITIES

SOCIETY: CITIES

By 2030 there will be 5 billion people living in cities, up from 3.5 billion in 2010.

GROWING URBANISM

Humans are now mainly an urbanised species. In the first three decade of this new millennium, the number of city dwellers will double to some 5 billion, driven by mushrooming cities in developing regions.

graph_2a_line-new.png

Source: United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division (2012)

SPEARHEADING ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

Cities are the main engines of wealth creation, currently generating around 80% of global economic output. There will be a wide prosperity gap between urban and rural populations in 2025. At the same time, many cities will struggle to provide homes, services, and infrastructure for their dramatically expanding populations.

Our_World_2B.jpg

DECLINING SLUM POPULATIONS

From 1990 to 2012, the urban population living in slums declined from over 1 billion to 863 million. The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, which commit to continuing the fight against poverty and to providing safe, inclusive, and sustainable settlements for all, are expected to catalyse further significant reductions in slum populations towards 2025.

Our_World_2C.jpg

SUSTAINABLE URBANIZATION

Cities play a pivotal role in one of the fundamental challenges of our time – enabling economic growth within the ecological limits of the Earth. The spreading geographic and carbon footprint of cities (urban area expansion could triple from 2000 to 2030) will exacerbate climate change, which, in turn, will challenge the long-term sustainability of cities.

“A compact, transit-oriented [development] model in the world’s largest 724 cities could reduce GHG emissions by the equivalent of 1.5 billion tonnes CO2 per year by 2030.” – New Climate Economy Report, 2014

SOCIETY: HEALTH

SOCIETY: HEALTH

RISING HEALTH EXPENDITURE

The fraction of Gross World Product spent on healthcare will increase sharply in the coming decades. This is largely driven by rising healthcare costs in developed countries, linked to ageing populations, increased patient expectations, a growing burden of disease, sub-optimal allocation of resources, and rising unit costs of care.

Our_World_3A.jpg

CHRONIC DISEASE SPREADING

The number of deaths globally from chronic non-communicable diseases (NCDs) is expected to soar as prevalence in developing countries approaches the levels currently associated with developed countries. If current trends continue, NCDs will kill 55 million annually by 2030. NCDs include heart diseases, cancer, chronic respiratory diseases, and diabetes.

Deaths attributed to non-communicable diseases (as % of total number of deaths)

graph_3b_line-new.png

Source: European Environmental Agency (2014)

PERSONALIZATION OF HEALTHCARE

By 2025, healthcare will be considerably more tailored to the individual profile of patients, the majority of whom will meet their doctors informed and empowered by online sources and apps. Increased health literacy, and a growing spectrum of technology assisting in personalization of healthcare will enable earlier intervention and health coaching.

000072367347.jpg

RESISTANCE TO ANTIBIOTICS

Antibiotic resistance is one of the predominant public health concerns of the 21st century, and yet efforts to develop new antibiotics since the 1980s have been lacklustre. Towards 2025, the WHO will increasingly stress the need for collaborative efforts between governments, hospitals, and pharmaceutical companies to address this challenge.

“A post-antibiotic era – in which common infections and minor injuries can kill – is a very real possibility for the 21st century.” – WHO, June 2014

0 0 1 2

Download PDF

1. Fill in details/ 2. Download

* Mandatory fields

Thank you for registering to download your copy of Technology Outlook 2025

Click the button below to download the report.

Would you like to learn more about DNV GL? Watch our video

Download PDF