Forward-thinking collaboration between Infront and W.I.R.E. explores sports potentially positive impact on 21st century society
Zug / Lausanne, Switzerland, 3 November 2021 – Today’s sports landscape is embedded in a context of unprecedented change: ongoing globalisation, new players entering the industry, rising healthcare costs, technological disruptions, and climate change pose existential risks. The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic is just one example of this.
How can sports empower society to tackle these issues? The importance of this question and more is outlined in “Brave New Sport”, a forward-thinking study about the future of sports created through a collaboration between Infront and the independent Think Tank Web for Interdisciplinary Research and Expertise (W.I.R.E.). The book was launched at a dedicated event at The Olympic Museum in Lausanne on 3 November.
Published through NZZ Libro, “Brave New Sport” explores the co-evolution of sport, technology and society and how it could develop to reflect the world’s needs over the next 30 years. Using interviews with experts in sport, psychology, business, politics, human enhancement and architecture as well as over 100 research sources, the 150-page publication showcases sport’s current functions, opportunities and challenges. It outlines how sport can act as a positive catalyst on social, economic, political and technological issues in the future.
“Our aim is to foster a broad dialogue”
The findings serve as a basis for nine predictions and bold scenarios which cover trends such as the rise of machine sports and artificial intelligence, the change of power structures and how sports are organised, financed and performed as well as the hyper fragmentation of channels and content. The final chapter rounds up the findings, acting as guidelines for business, politics and society.
Philippe Blatter, President & CEO of Infront, said: “I am thrilled to finally introduce ‘Brave New Sport’ to the world and I believe it is something that could drive some truly eye-opening conversations with those both within and beyond the sports industry. When we first initiated this study, our aim was to foster a broad dialogue revolving around what a desirable future of sport could look like and how we could shape it. This book reflects the many benefits sport could have on society by taking a fresh perspective and we hope to intensify the debate about the future and where we need to focus on moving forward."
Stephan Sigrist, Founder and Director of W.I.R.E., said: “For the first time we have applied our proven interdisciplinary research approach and expertise in bridging the gap between trend and reality to sport. Sport is an essential societal power that is increasingly being factored into all aspects of our lives including economy, media, technology, healthcare, urban planning and architecture amongst others. 'Brave New Sport' identifies the drivers of change in the sports environment, presents clear predictions and respective bold scenarios for what could be next and provides key recommendations to launch a discussion about what is a necessary and required future for the sector.”
Jörg Polzer, Vice President of Strategic Communications at Infront, said: "With ‘Brave New Sport’, we have created the most holistic outlook on the long-term future of sport. This presentation of the book kicks off a year-long stakeholder dialogue across multiple channels. We are keen to see how our ideas and findings resonate and we hope for openness, curiosity and, of course, some bravery. All feedback and input will be collected and consolidated and, ultimately, delivered to the industry by the end of 2022."
The book features imaginative artwork by renowned Australian illustrator Andrew Archer, who has brought the future predictions and bold scenarios forming the core of "Brave New Sport" to life in a unique and exciting approach. Find more information and join the dialogue on bravenew.sport or on social media using the #BraveNewSport hashtag.
The publication can be purchased using the following ISBN number:
All commercial revenue received by Infront from “Brave New Sport” will be donated to Right to Play.
Notes for editors
The full press kit, including imagery from “Brave New Sport” can be accessed below. Please include ©Infront for any use.
W.I.R.E. is a leading think tank and a Future Consultancy with over 13 years of experience in strategic foresight, innovation development and the promotion of new insights. An interdisciplinary research focus, the ability to bridge trends to reality, a critical attitude to hypes and the combination of form and content are the foundation for differentiating solutions and experiences. With deep knowledge about digital transformation, future client needs or sustainability, W.I.R.E. has experience in working with different industries from healthcare to financial services, real estate to retail.
W.I.R.E. has a long-standing track record of collaborations with leading global companies as well as family-owned businesses, universities, and works in a network of international innovators and opinion leaders. www.thewire.ch