The investment ecosystem is full of multiple strands, non-linear parts, and two-way feedback loops that make the landscape very difficult to map, especially in its future form.
We begin by referencing the Scenarios from Future State of the Investment Profession: These are descriptions of possible future states, at a high level, not point estimates or forecasts.
These Scenarios are a tool to help organizations prepare for the future. From these, we outline contingent Narratives that make the Scenarios more specific for investment firms at a more detailed level.
Given the Scenarios and the Narratives, we suggest some Shifts—actions that individual investment firms and the industry as a whole can take to adapt given future outcomes.
The links among the Scenarios, Narratives, and Shifts allow leaders to zoom in or out between bigger picture and smaller picture views. This produces a better-balanced picture with more accurate understanding of the issues, more agreement on beliefs, and better connections to actions.
Differentiated stories about possible future pathways and states in the investment industry and the wider world. They are not point estimates or forecasts; as relevant stories they help firms prepare for the future.
Descriptions of the current and future state of industry-specific issues. They help firms with understanding the key details of the evolving landscape in the next 5–10 years. They follow from the Scenarios.
Descriptions of what should change in the next 5–10 years for positive progress to be made—both at the level of the individual firm and on an industry-wide basis; they help firms to decide on desirable actions and the industry to evolve its practices. They follow from the Narratives.
New technologies promote new business models; disruption and creative destruction are endemic
Engagement in society differs by geography, generation and social group; effects on financial services participation and preferences
Interest rates stay low, global growth disappoints, and political instability rises
Investment industry becomes more professional, ethical, and client-centric