9 Ways Remote Work is going to Change the World by 2036
A prediction about the next two decades of remote work
At BuffrSpace, we’re very passionate about the future of work and its possibilities.
The landscape of work, the very idea of what a workspace looks and feels like, has evolved over the past two decades and we are super excited at the possibilities the next two decades hold. With technologies like virtual reality, wearables, cloud storage, big data and even faster internet speeds, remote working is set to experience astounding evolution and enormous adoption all over the world.
It’s really exciting and we just couldn’t help but imagine (with some pretty nifty guesswork) what the next twenty years will do to the global landscape.
Here are 9 ways we’re pretty sure the future of work will change the world.
1. There will be 1 billion digital nomads in the world
You read that right. 1 billion lifestyle-mobile professionals who work from anywhere but a centralised office building. Mathematical projections peg the world population at 8.8billion in 2035. Meaning, one in every eight person you meet will be a digital nomad. This was a prediction made by popular digital nomad, Pieter Thiels, who is blazing the trail on the digital nomad front. Here’s a pretty trippy interview he had on Wired magazine where he delves more into the digital nomad lifestyle.
2. Less marriages
Think about it. A billion travelling professionals means marriage would either be undesirable, or would be put off until much later in life.
A sizable portion of eligible bachelors and spinsters putting off marriage till much later, suddenly makes the idea of a own home unappealing. After all, they’ll be spending most if not all their time on the road, travelling the world and working from exotic locations. This would lead to more innovations in the housing industry a la AirBnB. Already, startups like Roam and WeLive offer a network of co-living spaces, along with a lease that lets you continually move around the world i.e. after a couple of weeks or months in Madrid, you can head to Miami, or Ubud, Bali still on the same lease. Expect more heavy hitters to launch out in a big way into the home sharing market.
4. Nomad Cities (and taxes)
Just as we have megacities, pretty soon, we’ll have nomad friendly cities. A 1 billion demographic isn’t something to scoff at. Just as we have international tourist centers, expect countries to begin deliberately wooing the nomads, making their cities nomad friendly. We’ll get to a point where governments are going to compete for them. Wanna know why? Taxes.
Nomads currently get away with paying no taxes. Even though they spend money locally, they’re currently taking advantage of local infrastructure and government services — such as the protection of local police — without giving much back in the way of taxes. But sooner rather than later, someone’s going to catch on, and then we’ll have laws and taxing systems for digital nomads (nomad tax?).
5. CoWorking spaces will get bigger and better
By the time the trend is in its early majority stage, multinational coworking space brands will begin to emerge (unicorns, anyone?). We’ll have membership packages allowing nomads to walk into any coworking space in any continent around the world and get stuff done. A VIP package nets them even more perks on any continent they find themselves.
6. Sharing economy 2.0
If you think the sharing economy has kicked off, wait until the digital nomad revolution hits its late majority stage. These folks don’t own anything. Why would they? They travel, they rent, they work, they get bored, they travel and repeat the cycle all over again.
Uber better find a way to get itself in every city because these guys are going to be hailing on-demand cabs in troves. In fact, they’ll be needing on-demand everything. Which means almost every business will sign up for BuffrSpace, or its equivalent in their city. So we’ll have coffee shops, restaurants, churches, betting centres, you name it, if they’ve got extra room, they’ll want to list that space and have nomads come in and use and pay them for it.
7. African and Eastern Digital Nomads
Right now, the digital nomad lifestyle is a niche idea familiar mostly to Americans and Europeans. But in about 20 years, we’ll have them in every country around the world, including Asia and Africa.
8. Mixed race
All work and no play, they say, makes Jack dull. Well, in-between all that travelling and working there’s going to be a lot of playing. With things like Tinder (and its incarnations in other countries) nomads are going to be mixing with other races which will result in a lot of biracial (and triracial?) kids. This is probably the beginning of the end of racism, because if everyone is mixed, can anyone really claim the superior race?
9. A new market
Advertisers, app developers, banks, travel agents, you name it, these nomads are going to force producers and service providers to re-examine their business strategy. In twenty years, digital nomad will be a legitimate demography just like millennials and working mothers, before it.
And there you have it. Let me just say, I got carried away writing this. But that’s the beauty of this sort of thing. The possibilities are truly endless, limited only by imagination. Who would have thought app development would be a multibillion dollar industry? But Steve Jobs changed all that in 2007 with the release of the iPhone. Same way, we never know what lies ahead for the future of work in the next five, ten, fifteen years. But we are eager to see it.
BuffrSpace is building Africa’s largest platform of on-demand workspaces for remote workers, business travellers, distributed teams, startups, freelancers and anyone else in between.
For businesses or individuals who have surplus space and would like to list on our platform, fill this form http://goo.gl/forms/TQUS19ORTBLGmN8L2