CASSANDRA is clearly (not necessarily the best word when it comes to his predictions…) not the only soothsayer in town—witness the latest from, a company whose purpose is in its name. The Trendwatching analysts have just released their top ten consumer trends for 2013, and they make interesting reading.

I particularly like number 1, with its prediction of more “crowdfunding”, a neat evolution from the concept of crowd sourcing. Numbers 9 and 10 look a touch hopeful, but why shouldn’t we hope in these troubled times? Number 8 takes a bit of a punt on the spread of 3D-printing (I suspect it will be more a feature of 2014 than this year), and number 7 sounds good—but surely many consumers will object to surrendering so much of their personal data in the first place.

Of the others in the top 10, the one that surprises (and pleases) me is number 6: the idea that emerging markets will emphasise their cultural heritage in exporting fashion items, music, design and so on. In other words, creation will take the place of imitation and a global marketplace so often criticised for its homogeneity will demonstrate a bit of proud diversity.