About Drivers of Change

What will our world be like in 2050? Investigate the key global issues and trends driving change across the world. The Drivers of Change examines the top 25 drivers of change impacting our societies and markets across 10 topics, from climate change to urbanisation to poverty.

Drivers of Change is a planning tool that helps us to ask the right questions in order to plan effectively for the future. The 10 topics (climate change, convergence, demographics, energy, food, oceans, poverty, urbanisation, waste, and water) can be explored through any, or all, of the five STEEP lenses (social, technological, economic, environmental, and political).

The Drivers of Change programme was developed by Arup Foresight.

To find out more about our programmes and services,
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Drivers of Change timeline

The Drivers of Change program was designed to facilitate conversations about the trends and issues that are likely to have the most significant impacts on the built environment.

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can you imagine?

The Drivers of Change concept originated in Chris Luebkeman’s ‘Can you imagine?’ lecture
and workshop series, which delivered over 130 presentations to a global audience.

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Poster series

The ‘Can you imagine?’ series developed into a collection of posters, featuring intriguing questions and facts, to facilitate multi-modal learning styles during workshops.

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The series develops with topical research around key themes: energy, climate change and water.

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first set

The first series of Drivers of Change cards was produced.

venice biennale

A Drivers of Change exhibition was created for the
opening of the 10th International Architecture Exhibition - Venice Biennale.

tokyo design week

The Drivers of Change exhibition featured at Tokyo Designer’s Week.

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turkish translation

Drivers of Change were translated for the first time through
a collaboration with TUSIAD-Sabanci University, Istanbul.

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chinese translation

Arup was involved in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing,
which led to the commissioning of a Chinese translation of Drivers of Change.

drivers of change 1.0

Drivers of Change 1.0 — The first series of Drivers of Change was
produced covering energy, water, climate change, demographics
and urbanisation.


prestel edition

A new set was developed to explore poverty and was included in the Prestel edition.


Drivers of Change food was developed to explore food production, distribution and consumption..

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regional set - jordan

A programme of Drivers of Change workshops was commissioned by the Royal Family of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.

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Drivers of Change: oceans was developed in conjunction with the Arup global Maritime Executive.

korean translation

Arup participated in the Gwangju Design Biennale, which led to the Korean
translation of the cards through an affiliate publisher to the United Nations.

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Drivers of Change: Convergence engages with the increasingly interconnected fields of business, science, and technology.

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dubai expo 2020

A series of cards was curated to explore opportunity, mobility and sustainability to support Dubai’s bid for the 2020 Expo.

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water 2.0

Drivers of Change Water 2.0 was created — the first in the series to be refreshed with new issues and facts.

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drivers of change digital

The Drivers of Change digital app is launched, enabling a new audience to engage with the issues.

theme refresh — Energy 2.0

Drivers of Change Energy 2.0 is created and launched at the World Energy Council’s annual event in Istanbul.

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drivers of change 2.0

The Drivers of Change 2.0 series is completed with updated sets for climate change, urbanisation, demographics and waste.

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ocean health

A new set exploring climate change and ocean health is curated by
Australian environmental scientist and explorer, Tim Jarvis, for the One Ocean Exploration Zone.

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shenzhen design week

Drivers of Change 2.0 features as part of the London Design category to explore design for sustainability.