GTFS: Global Trends and Future Scenarios Index

Disruptive Civil Technologies: Six Technologies with Potential Impacts on US Interests out to 2025


The National Intelligence Council sponsors workshops and research with nongovernmental experts to gain knowledge and insight and to sharpen debate on critical issues. The views expressed in this report do not reflect official US Government positions.

This report was prepared by SRI Consulting Business Intelligence under the auspices of the National Intelligence Council. Questions and comments regarding this report should be directed to the National Intelligence Officer for Science and Technology on (703) 482-6811.

Executive Summary (excerpt)

Six civil technologies offer the potential to enhance or degrade US power over the next fifteen years according to National Intelligence Council (NIC) sponsored contractor research. These include biogerontechnology, energy storage technology, biofuels and bio-based chemical technology, clean coal technology, service robotic technology, and information technology devoted to increased connectivity of people and things. Biogerontechnology offers the means to accomplish control over and improvement in the human condition, and promises improvements in lifespan. The advancement of the science and technology underlying the biological aging process has the potential to not only extend the average natural lifespan, but also to simultaneously postpone many if not all of the costly and disabling conditions that humans experience in later life, thereby creating a longevity dividend that will be economic, social and medical in nature.

  • The disruptive potential comes in the form of new treatment modalities, shifts in the cost, and resulting allocation and use of health care resources.
  • Nations will be challenged as a result of changing demographic structures, new psychologies, activity patterns of aging yet healthy citizens, and the resulting requirement to formulate new national economic and social policies.