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Research and innovation
News article13 June 2019

What are the technologies that will reshape our world? Independent experts identify 100 of them

Self-healing smartphones, asteroid mining for essential minerals and telepathic brain-to-brain communication enabled by technology. These are some examples of impressive innovations on the horizon presented in the new independent expert report 100 Radical Innovation Breakthroughs for the future published today.

The report is a foresight study displaying the progress and outlook for 100 ground breaking social and technological innovations. Some of the innovations, such as plant communication, are a long way off. Others, such as medical exoskeletons, are already being tested and used.

By capturing the most potentially impactful results, the report provides a strategic resource to policymakers and anyone concerned with the future of science, technology and innovation. It can create common references between different policies, may contribute to national and regional strategies, and spark discussion about the ethical and social implications of the coming waves of innovation.

Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation said:

Many of the innovations in this report sound like science fiction, but are on the way to becoming science fact. It is fascinating and refreshing to get such a broad overview of potential future innovations together with an analysis of Europe’s relative position on the world stage. This report will help policymakers across Europe prepare for the future and will intrigue anyone interested in what that future will look like.


A combination of machine learning algorithms and human evaluation was used to identify the emerging developments. The independent experts who carried out the study scanned technology foresight studies from all over the world and more than 150,000 news items from 200 platforms, to identity 100 potentially impactful innovations. After successive waves of selection and refinement, the resulting list of 100 emerging topics was subjected to several assessment procedures including expert consultation and analysis of related patents and publications.

The emerging developments in the 100 Radical Innovation Breakthroughs for the future report are displayed on an interactive poster to quickly find more information on the state of play and outlook for each.

More information

Foresight – support for EU research and innovation policy making

Horizon scanning study: future radical innovation breakthroughs


Publication date
13 June 2019