Welcome to the Strategy and Futures Research Unit

We deliver understanding you can use.

SFRU is a new strategy and futures consultancy. We’re here to help your business understand – and prosper inside – a changing world.

We’re currently pre-launch. To be first to receive our upcoming report, Five Trends for the 2020s, subscribe here! 🚀🔮


We create useful understanding

SFRU is a new strategy and futures consultancy led by David Mattin, founder of the New World Same Humans newsletter and community.

We are on a mission to understand today and tomorrow. To deliver that understanding to our clients in forms they can use. And to work with those clients to devise new and better paths through a changing world.

That means SFRU is obsessed with the trends, ideas, and innovations reshaping both consumer behaviour and the wider business environment.

In free monthly reports, we’ll share the trends and futures insights we’re developing. And via workshops and consultancy, we’ll work with clients to develop a more specific understanding. Together, we’ll analyse what a changing world means for you. And how you can innovate to tap into the opportunities it offers.

You can expect some innovative special projects, too. So hold on to your hats.


Five Trends for the 2020s

Our first report will be Five Trends for the 2020s. You’ll learn about:

  • New Work Flows: In the coming decade a post-pandemic army of independent workers – fuelled by both opportunity and necessity – will reject traditional careers in favour of innovative, unconventional new paths founded in their unique interests, skills, and creativity.

  • The Metaversal Self: Simulated and virtual worlds are becoming new domains of meaningful experience. In the 2020s, millions will enter these worlds and unlock new ways to serve powerful, age-old human needs: social connection, wellbeing, status, and more.

  • B2A: A new kind of customer is transforming business. You know all about B2B and B2C, but are you ready for the rise of Business2Algorithm? In the 2020s, algorithmic purchasing decisions will reshape the relationship between businesses and customers, and transform what it means to be a brand.

…and more!

Subscribe to our mailing list now to be the first to receive the full report:


Our approach

A million and more futures consultancies want to tell you that we live in a world that’s changing faster than ever.

That’s a pretty vague claim. But more importantly, it’s only half the picture. When people seek to understand the future, they often make the mistake of becoming obsessed with what’s changing to the exclusion of all else. Usually, that means shiny new technologies.

But if we want meaningful insight on what lies ahead, our approach needs to start with people and what a changing world means for them. That means getting obsessed with what doesn’t change: fundamental human needs such as value, security, convenience, and status.

View a changing world through the lens of fundamental, unchanging human needs: that’s the route to actionable foresight.


Who we are

SFRU is led by David Mattin and Octavia Francis.

David is SFRU’s Head of Research. David is an internationally recognised expert on trends, consumer behaviour, and social change. He’s the founder of the New World Same Humans community, and co-author of Trend-Driven Innovation (Wiley). David has worked with a wide range of organisations to help them better understand and respond to what lies ahead. He sits on the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Consumption. David is the former Global Head of Trends and Insights at TrendWatching.

Octavia is SFRU’s Head of Business. Octavia is a highly experienced business and sales director. Want to get in touch? Email her on octavia@sfru.io.


Be ready

There’s much more coming from us at SFRU soon.

We all know that 2021 is set to be an interesting year for founders, marketers, product designers, CEOs, insight professionals, and innovators of all kinds! So subscribe now to be the first to receive our upcoming report: Five Trends for the 2020s.