When one keeps close track of futures studies produced in America, as we do constantly at futuribles, one cannot help but be struck by the proliferation of studies that try to draw up lists
of varying length, enumerating the trends of all kinds that will (or might) have a major impact on society and lifestyles in the 21st century. These often take the form of a simple inventory of trends and megatrends that the authors either identify in the United States today or expect as a result of recent developments, especially in science and technology. The lists are extremely diverse and usually lack any rigorous analysis.
Michel Drancourt reviews here one such study by two American political scientists who, not content with the usual catalogue, have tried to analyse which factors are most likely to affect the political life of the United States in the future.
They have identified five "realities" that they think will shape American political life in the 21st century, from the emergence of the information society to the ethnic mix of the population.