The twenties and beyond

This blog was written by Katrina Hall, MultiConnexions’ PR & Social Media Manager.

Since I have been on a brief but wonderful maternity leave looking after my beautiful new baby daughter Hazel, I have been spending more time at home with my television on. I started watching an utterly brilliant program on SBS called Years and Years which, if you haven’t seen it yet, I highly recommend. It is a six-part series set in 2019 Britain that follows its characters through until the year 2034 – not so far off in the future that it is far-fetched. Basically, it explores some of the trends we’re observing in our daily lives now through to their potential future outcomes.

Image Source: BBC

I love that the program is futuristic, but also realistic. I think this is what really encourages the viewer to sit up and pay attention to the things that are happening today that will impact us in the future. After all, since we don’t have a crystal ball, paying close attention to trends, statistics, facts and figures today is really the best way we can predict the future.

So, as I return to MultiConnexions and am confronted by the astonishing fact that we are not just looking forward to a New Year, but also a new decade (bring on the Twenties!) – what are the trends in Australia that we are seeing today that might offer us a glimpse into what the future will look like? What happens if we follow these trends through to their natural conclusions? And, of course, in my industry I must also ask what are the implications for businesses? Marketing?

I’m so glad you asked! Here are a few trends that I think are well worth paying attention to, including some identified by my favourite futurist, Mr Bernard Salt.

Population growth from Asia

Using Census and immigration sources, the Bureau of Statistics estimates at present about 30 per cent of the Australian population (7.5 million) was born overseas. The proportion for the Sydney built-up urban area is 39 per cent. Asia constitutes the biggest source of immigration, with China and India leading the way. Without any net overseas migration (no immigrants, no students, no refugees), Australia’s annual growth rate during the 2020s would be around 150,000. Add to that 180,000 net overseas migrants per year and Australia’s annual growth rate rises to 330,000. These trends look to continue in the future, and mean Australia will become more populated, and more Asian.

Benefits of immigration

Rising immigrant numbers is a driver of growth and prosperity for a variety of reasons. As the baby boomer generation exits the workforce in increasing numbers, we will experience a more and more pronounced need for skills and labour. Enter new Australians! Along with the boost to our workforce and economy, new migrants also come with an increased demand for their everyday requirements including housing, education, cars, food, retail, telecommunications and more. Australia is set to continue to prosper in the future by maintaining immigration numbers. McCrindle research estimates that migrants contribute over $10 billion to the Australian economy in their first ten years of settlement.


Growing emerging markets, particularly in Asia, will herald tremendous opportunities for Australia to grow through trade. Economics 101 says that trade can only benefit Australia and our trading partners as each country plays to their strengths. In the future, Australian businesses will have even greater access to new markets and be able to create new, more productive jobs. This may also mean greater competition, which will benefit consumers.

Greater focus on diversity

Diversity and inclusivity are already becoming a big part of government, HR and workforce practices with policies implemented to prevent discrimination. With the Australian population becoming increasingly diverse, we will see diversity begin to impact other areas of business from media to politics to marketing and beyond. Marketers will be forced to tailor their strategies and offerings to attract these diverse segments. Fortunately, the majority of Australians believe multiculturalism is a good thing and support action to tackle racism.

What do you think will be the great forces shaping the 2020s and beyond?

For more information on the future of multicultural Australia, contact MultiConnexions today.

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