At Possibilian we are interested in how ventures can create a better future, a future that is more vibrant, prosperous, and sustainable. In this post, we’re highlighting a few areas where we see extraordinary opportunity for progress in the next few years as we emerge from the pandemic. While these overlap with existing transition pathways, and will evolve over time, they focus in on certain characteristics of the types of innovations we think have particular momentum and potential for transformative impact.
We call them Transformation Hotspots
- Human Centred Social Infrastructure: Helping everyone and each other thrive.
- Smart Food: Engaging, local, and sustainable food and agriculture.
- Resilient Supply: Resilient supply chains and sustainable production ecosystems.
- Collective Culture: Vibrant, participatory, cultural resurgence.
- Boundless Collaboration: Working better, together, beyond boundaries.
- Integrated Decarbonization: Building back, better, through decarbonization.
- Embedded Interdependence: Crypto and cooperative inspired product, services, and systems.
Human Centred Social Infrastructure
Social infrastructure from education and healthcare to employment and social security, have all gone through dramatic shocks as a result of the pandemic. Old approaches and assumptions have been broken and bypassed, creating space for new solutions to emerge, particularly solutions that enable and put people first, remove barriers, and focus on the outcomes of their participants.
Catalysts: Regulatory resets; experiences of vulnerability; government funding.
Enabling Innovation Platforms: Cloud, Mobile Connected Devices, Frictionless Value Transfer
Existing Example: MeetFrank keyed in on the power imbalance between employees and employers, and uses technology to enable a new behavior that they believe can help democratize the job market.
Dramatic shifts in daily habits and lifestyles during the pandemic have meant more people are eating at home, often with limited supplies, while governments have had to respond to food crises among the most vulnerable. Collectively we are reconnecting with the importance of food. This connection will likely spur accelerated innovation around simple, smart, and sustainable food production, distribution, preparation, and delivery, with consumers expecting better quality and experiences, and governments investing in greater food security within their borders and for the most vulnerable.
Catalysts: Forced experience of prolonged home-cooking and staying at home; government investment in food security.
Enabling Innovation Platforms: AI, Robotics, DNA Sequencing
Existing Example: Jow is an example that shifts the behavior of grocery shopping to simply swiping and selecting simple, delicious and nutritious meals, making home-cooking easier, healthier, and fun.
Disruptions in supply-chains during the pandemic has raised the value in resiliency over efficiency. Buyers everywhere will be more conscious of ensuring essentials are always available. Part of that will include a rise in ‘good-enough’ solutions as well as enhanced use of intelligence and automation to ensure sufficient buffers, redundancy, and responsiveness.
Catalysts: Shift in procurement policy and practices across government, corporate, consumer.
Enabling Innovation Platforms: 3D Printing, Autonomous Mobility, Robotics, Frictionless Value Transfer
Existing Example:ProducePay grew out of the desire to build trust in every transaction, leveraging market intelligence and financing to create a stronger and more resilient produce supply chain.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a profound collective experience, shared by all of humanity. That experience will undoubtedly be reflected in our art and culture. Our need to process that experience, reflect on life, and reconnect with each other will intersect with new media and technologies to spark a wave of innovation in media, entertainment, gaming and culture, including how we create and value it.
Catalysts: The pandemic experience; shift in how people value connection and culture.
Enabling Innovation Platforms: Mobile Connected Devices, Blockchain, Cloud
Existing Example: Otis believe that culture is a new asset, democratizing ownership of fresh, emerging cultural assets like collectible skateboard designs, sneakers, comic books, and art.
Mass physical-distancing forced organizations to adopt remote collaboration and coordination technologies. In addition to breaking down past limitations, as these technologies and practices persist, new opportunities for cost-savings, efficiency, and coordination will emerge alongside innovations that break down barriers in participation based on who and where people are.
Catalysts: Mass experience of remote work; blurring of work and social interaction experiences.
Enabling Innovation Platforms: Cloud, AI, Mobile Connected Devices.
Existing Example:Hopin aims to create better connections and a better planet by using online technology to re-envision how people can come together for offline, online, and hybrid events.
As organizations and individuals have heightened appreciation for our individual and systemic vulnerabilities there will increased acceptance and interest in our systems being more resilient. This creates and opening for the technologies and practices of the crypto and cooperative movements to become embedded in products, organizations, and systems across society.
Catalysts: Systemic failures from unaddressed externalities; recognition of interconnectedness; value of resiliency;
Enabling Innovation Platforms: Blockchain, Frictionless Value Transfer, IoT, AI
Existing Example: Leap connects distributed energy resources and owners of all types with grid operators through an energy marketplace that facilitates dynamic demand response.
The pandemic provides a working example of the types systemic shocks and risks of inaction that have been feared from the climate crisis. As governments around the world introduce stimulus to stabilize and restart local economies, decarbonization solutions that also create jobs, improve wellbeing, increase resiliency and facilitate future infrastructure will have heightened interest.
Catalysts: Government stimulus; pandemic experience makes climate crisis implications more real.
Enabling Innovation Platforms: Energy Storage, Autonomous Mobility, IOT, AI
Existing Example: Wren helps consumers live carbon neutral through a simple monthly subscription, which gets invested in measurable, community-based decarbonization activities.
For more background: