About Futures Pathfinder

Looking ahead to the world of 2030

Futures Pathfinder examines the transformation objectives and trends driving a critical decade in which businesses must reengineer many aspects of their operations to deliver sustainable growth.

Developed in collaboration with the Economist Intelligence Unit and Signal Noise, Futures Pathfinder spotlights the most important evolutions in thinking and technology, with the ability to instantly benchmark the transformation progress of your business against a wealth of comparative data.

Building Futures Pathfinder

The foundation research for Futures Pathfinder focuses on four transformation objectives that businesses must embrace to succeed in the world of 2030.


Transitioning to zero or net-zero-carbon operations is essential for meeting Paris Agreement targets. Key sectors such as construction, manufacturing, and transportation have already made bold commitments, and customers are starting to expect action from the companies they purchase from.


Digital transformation is more important than ever in a world that relies on greater flexibility and efficiency. While the last decade focused on connecting people, this decade is about accelerating connectivity and capability to make operations faster and smarter.

Holistic impact

The pandemic is one of many events driving businesses to improve resilience throughout the value chain. With a better understanding of activities and impacts, businesses can deliver greater value to customers and communities, and achieve stronger financial security.

Resource efficiency

The world’s economy must become more efficient and regenerative to address the damaging realities of resource depletion and biodiversity loss. Businesses are developing innovative ways to use and reuse materials so they can do more with less, while minimizing unproductive waste.

Across the four transformation objectives, we identified essential trends that are driving competitive advantage, such as the need to reduce energy and material use, the transition to low-carbon supply chains, and the rise of Industry 4.0.

Our extensive survey reveals how advanced businesses are in adopting these trends, which paints a clear picture of their progress toward the transformation objectives and their readiness for the world of 2030. Futures Pathfinder also gives you a unique opportunity to benchmark your business against this data. By identifying your own transformation progress, you can find a clearer path to greater success and resilience in 2030.

Learn more about our research below.

Our research


We surveyed a broad range of businesses about their strategic priorities, sustainability practices, and resilience.

Number of businesses 775
Number of countries 13


Businesses that responded to our survey were categorized into six geographic areas.

  • Asia (Japan, Singapore, and South Korea)
  • China
  • Emerging Asia (India, Philippines, and Vietnam)
  • Europe (France, Germany, and the United Kingdom)
  • Middle East (Saudi Arabia and UAE)
  • US


We focused on three sectors that need to deliver significant transformation to drive sustainable growth.

  • Construction (e.g. electrical, engineering, and plumbing)
  • Manufacturing (e.g. aerospace, chemicals, and defense)
  • Transportation (e.g. distribution, logistics, and warehousing)


Survey questions indicate how advanced businesses are in adopting 18 essential trends, which enables us to chart their overall progress toward the four transformation objectives.

  • Decarbonization

    Extent to which a business is reducing overall carbon emissions

  • Holistic impact

    Extent to which business impact is monitored, and resilience improved

  • Digitalization

    Extent to which technology is improving productivity and innovation

  • Resource efficiency

    Extent to which materials are being reduced, reused, or regenerated

Evolving Futures Pathfinder

Futures Pathfinder will take a closer look at the world of 2030 in four key areas of society: mobility, cities, work, and industry. We are currently undertaking extensive research to identify the key opportunities that businesses can capitalize on to deliver their critical transformation objectives.

We also intend to dive deeper into our progress indicators to help businesses learn more about the world’s readiness for 2030.

Futureproof your business

Siemens helps large businesses to capitalize on opportunities and overcome challenges. Get in touch to find out how we can enhance your transformation success.