Drawing on decades of research from hundreds of thousands of participants, IKEA’s annual ‘Life at Home Report’ delves into the secrets of what makes a happy home, including the eight essential elements: control, comfort, security, nurturing, belonging, enjoyment, accomplishment and aspirations. In its latest report, the global home furnishing brand unveiled a captivating exploration of the potential futures of home life for the next decade.
Collaborating with art director Per Eriksson and leveraging AI-generated imagery, the Swedish furniture giant introduced three intriguing scenarios that offer a glimpse into the lives of fictional characters – Jin, Angela and Jamie, living in South Korea, the USA and Sweden, respectively. Through vivid storytelling and imaginative design concepts, IKEA paints a picture of possible home-living futures, where technology and sustainability seamlessly blend into our daily lives.
‘These possible futures were created by digging into what we call “early signals of change”, allowing us to understand potential future trajectories,’ Maria Jeansson, Global Foresight Lead for the ‘Life at Home Report’, explained. ‘By building multiple futures scenarios, we can explore emerging needs and ensure that IKEA can continue to be a relevant partner for life.’
Jin’s Seoul-based ‘home on the go’ focuses on a young man who lives on the coast, but due to flooding has been temporarily displaced to a pod – something he’s used to in the changing climate. For him, home is not a place but a ‘personalised AI advisor’ that controls his living spaces, and allows him to access his friends and family through holographic meetings.
Divorcee Angela joins a women-only housing collective in Massachusetts, where she learns new skills, helps develop the community’s anaerobic waste digesters, instals biosolar wallpaper, and uses algae-generated power. This situation responds to IKEA’s research that found that ‘one-fifth of us would like to live on our own power and grow our own food’.
Jamie, who is non-binary, lives in a ‘nurtured home’ in Sweden that defines the future of eco-friendly living with self-cleaning surfaces, mist baths to save water and 3D-printed compostable furniture made from mushroom compounds.