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3M has announced its latest project 3M Futures, a new platform showcasing five global science and technology trends shaping the world today—and the future of tomorrow. The platform explores each topic alongside commentary and perspectives from 3M experts, scientists, engineers, and designers at the forefront of their fields. 3M Futures also features data from global, third-party research conducted across 11 countries to understand perceptions of these top science, technology, and design trends.
As science and technological innovations continue to advance rapidly, 3M explores the top five global trends for 2022:
- Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR): Mixed reality is already changing the way we live, work and entertain—the metaverse is poised to change our perceptions of reality.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI): How artificial intelligence and machine learning are revolutionizing everything from entertainment to business but require conversations about broader implications and ethics.
- Sustainable Materials: The circular economy is introducing innovation in material science and design while disrupting industry, ushering in a more sustainable future.
- The New Paradigm—A Pandemic Aware World: The pandemic has created a paradigm shift in how we interact. From telemedicine and health-conscious design to remote work, the new abnormal is here to stay.
- Equity—Through Science and Technology: The greatest innovation comes from diverse thinkers. Equity, representation and equal access to science and technology learning, like minority representation and STEM in youth, are paramount to solving the challenges of both the present and the future.
“Every day, 3Mers around the world are unlocking the next phase of what’s possible and exploring the latest trends in science and technology,” said Kevin Gilboe, Head of 3M Design, International. “3M Futures is a great opportunity for us to showcase the broad ways 3M is helping to shape the future—developing, designing, and engineering cutting-edge solutions within the most relevant global trends, while profiling the incredible talent across our company who are experts in their fields.”
“3M is committed to leveraging science and technology to innovate solutions that will address the world’s biggest challenges,” said Reggie Pulumbarit, Country Leader of 3M Philippines. “In a developing country like the Philippines, it is important that we create innovations that help improve lives, open up possibilities for talent, and address struggles in new ways. Through platforms such as 3M Futures, we hope to deepen our investment in making science more relevant and engaging, as well as highlighting how science and technological innovations continue to impact daily life.”
The expert contributors chosen to participate include an array of 3M scientists, engineers, designers and other leaders at the forefront of their industries. From artificial intelligence to equity, each is passionate about their fields and has a personal interest in broad applications of technology and science.
3M Futures Survey
The 3M Futures Survey uncovers global perceptions of future technologies, with results from 11 countries: Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, UK, USA and South Korea. The survey uncovers what respondents believe future innovation should focus on across the globe and the ways they have—or have not—directly interacted with the technologies referenced across the five core trends.
Key findings include:
- Science and technology
Public health, humanitarian crises, extreme weather crises, a cure for Alzheimer’s and ecological disasters are seen as the top problems to focus on over the next 5 years.
- Mainstream Virtual Reality
Virtual reality is expected to be a normal part of our everyday lives sooner than other advancements, especially in gaming and entertainment.
- AI interest and concerns
The survey results showed that while people are excited about AI, many are concerned about data privacy and want more transparency on how the technology is being used in society.
- Sustainability: top environmental threats
Respondents feel single-use plastics are a bigger threat to the environment than fossil fuels and fast fashion.
- Real life vs. tech.
In the shadow of the pandemic, tech-driven innovations are being met with some resistance as many are trying to decrease tech in their life and seek in-person socialization and hobbies.
3M Futures is now accessible online from all 3M locations, including the Philippines, through 3M.com/futures. Following its launch across all media platforms, 3M Futures will feature ongoing stories, VR demos and content throughout the year. Insights from the survey will inform exploration of future topics and content.
To download full 3M Futures survey data, including by country and infographic breakdowns, visit: https://futures.3m.com/resources