What could our society look like in twenty years’ time? And what role will the technical sector play by then? These questions form the starting point of SCENARIO2040, a study in which Techniek Nederland presented the results in February 2020. Techniek Nederland is the largest branch association for the installation sector in the Netherlands and represents approximately 6300 companies. The study combines developments that are already visible today with the views of various experts. SCENARIO2040 is not a forecast, but describes the possible social situation in 2040.
The report is based on two very different policy directions.
New technology: a challenge for young entrepreneurs
Techniek Nederland wants SCENARIO2040 to challenge the technical sector, politics, the education and other parties involved, to think about the consequences of technical developments and policy choices.
Chairman of Techniek Nederland, Doekle Terpstra, says: “With SCENARIO2040 we dare to look forward twenty years. This makes the report interesting for everyone, but certainly for young entrepreneurs, a rapidly growing group within the technical sector. They must already take into account techniques such as AI, photonics, robotization, nanotechnology and bio-printing”.
Techniek Nederland, and the strategic partners WijTechniek, ISSO and TVVL, see the scenario study as a basis for discussions with, among others, governments, unions, educational umbrella organizations and partners in the value chain. In these conversations, the technology umbrella seeks to link social challenges to scientific and technological developments.
The Flight Ahead or Green New Deal
In SCENARIO2040, two widely differing scenarios have been developed:
- The first is called The Flight Ahead. In this scenario, the current economic model remains intact and prosperity growth is the highest goal. Economic market instruments and technology must provide a solution to the societal challenges.
- In the second scenario, Green New Deal, things are going to change. Well-being of people, nature and the environment are central and the main goal is to repair the damage to the planet as much as possible.
Scenarios: an aid in developing a successful strategy
A number of developments seem inevitable in the coming years, such as a warmer climate, a growing population and a further technologization of society. Nevertheless, the authors of the report emphasize that the scenarios do not show inevitable outcomes. Ultimately, it is the governments, civil society organizations, employers, employees and citizens who together determine the future. Techniek Nederland sees the scenarios as an aid in determining a successful strategy for the technical sector.
Chairman Doekle Terpstra expects that the sector will play an important role in solving the major social issues: “Technology is indispensable in creating a sustainable, safe, accessible and comfortable world.”
From CONNECT2025 to SCENARIO2040
In 2018, Techniek Nederland published CONNECT2025. This report, which describes future developments based on existing techniques, was received with great interest within and outside the industry and still does. Unlike CONNECT2025, SCENARIO2040 is based on scenario thinking. In addition, the new report looks ahead over a longer period of time.
More information or your copy of SCENARIO2040?