At the pop-up store of Hello Bank in Brussels Wolvengracht today innovation, trend and future professionals meet to discuss the state and the (of course) future of the industry. It is both interesting and exciting to observe the growth and the formation of the industry in a dynamic environment.

The trend and future research industry is challenged by several developments that are well known by industrial economists. Entry of small consulting companies attracted by the increasing demand lead to growing  competition within the industry. Large and well known strategy consulting firms obviously have an edge over the incumbent trend and future research and consulting organizations, this edge is caused by reputation and trust. However, the industry seems not to be challenged by technological development of data and text mining techniques as making sense of the developments still requires human brains. Not to speak about devising strategies for the identified trends and implementing the responses.

As an outsider, for me it is immediately obvious that the diversity of the labor force in the industry is both an asset and a threat as no harmonized, standardized or coordinated comprehensive education that leads to a career in the trend and future industry.