A methodology for the analysis of technology trends with great impact potential is described. PREFET H2020 project implemented a process iterating from manually identified trend seeds to Intelligence-Augmented desktop research supported with text-mining, data mining and machine learning. “Weak signals” were detected and trends were “informed” (insight generation), resulting into a list of 45 “pre-validated Trends” that were mapped with UN’s Sustainable Development Goals to leverage responsible research. In parallel, they were opened to a consultation involving thousands of researchers in ICT, Health Sciences, Biotechnology and Environmental Sciences; enriched with interviews with artists, architects and designers. A workshop around prioritisation of technology trends was organised, resulting into a list of “top 20 future and emerging trends”, graphically presented in this paper. Insights about some trends in the list are given.
The paper finally presents how trends are transformed into “play-grounds” where building disruptive project ideas, and summarizes conclusions from this integral process.