We keep our ear to the ground for the interesting stats, insights and discussion points you need to feel in the know.

1. Is tech the answer to a hyper-aging society?

Older woman using technology to check her well being

Japan, China, and several other countries are feeling the impact of an aging population. Last year Japan hit a new milestone: for the first time, more than one in 10 people are now aged 80 or older, according to the latest national data. This shift brings challenges like providing nursing care, labour shortages, and increased loneliness. But this is where well-being technology comes in. Think fitness tracking through wearable devices, rehabilitation using virtual reality and robo advisors that reinvigorate local communities. Well-being technology doesn’t just improve quality of life, it represents a booming market worth approximately USD7 trillion, according to the Global Wellness Institute. Takashi Miura and Hiroyuki Okabe of EY Japan tell us why companies should pay attention…

The Future of a Hyper-Aging Society Navigated by Well-Being Technology

2. The most severe natural disaster to hit Rio Grande do Sul

Climate change in brazil

Since 29 April 2024, the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul has experienced rainfall three times higher than the average for this time of year. Subsequent floods, waterlogging, and landslides have caused what scientists describe as the most severe natural disaster in the history of the state, with more than 2.3 million people affected. The National Confederation of Municipalities (CNM) estimated that the floods have also caused losses of at least BRL 12.2 billion (USD 2.2 billion)in damages to homes, businesses, infrastructure and agriculture. Due to climate change, catastrophes like this are our new reality. Ione Anderson and Ricardo Assumpção from EY Brazil offer their insights on how to build climate resilience and sustainable development. Their recommendations apply to flooding, but also to other climate extremes already seen in Brazil, like droughts in the Amazon rainforest.

Risk of Extreme Climate Events in Brazil

3. Restoring Europe’s competitiveness

man jumping between rocks by a lake with mountains

Europe should be a magnet for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI). It is home to 500 million consumers, is the world’s third-largest economy and boasts some of the world’s leading academic and research institutions. So why did FDI in Europe decline by 4% in 2023; the first annual downturn since 2020? Slow economic growth, persistently high inflation, high energy prices, geopolitical uncertainty and declining demand for office space, are all key drivers of the downturn. Huge stimulus packages in other parts of the world may have also diverted investment from Europe. For example, the US’s Inflation Reduction Act is credited with mobilizing US$98 billion in investment and creating more than 80,000 jobs. Some of these challenges are in fact declining, but policymakers can’t just wait and hope for things to change. EY research shows that policymakers could focus on nine areas…

Amid global competition for investment, what more can Europe do?

4. It’s worth digging deeper

Wind farm and solar panels under a beautiful blue sky with a few clouds

At first glance the global renewables sector appears to be thriving, bolstered by a record investment of $1.8 trillion in 2023. This investment led to the largest ever increase in new capacity, with 507 gigawatts added, two-thirds of which came from solar power. But dig a little deeper and the picture isn’t quite so rosy. Last year’s surge in investment means we’re on track to boost global renewable energy capacity by two and a half times by 2030. It’s a promising start, but it’s still not enough to meet the COP28 goal of tripling renewable capacity by that time. On top of that, years of underinvestment in infrastructure mean that grid upgrades and expansion are now urgently needed. Here’s how battery energy storage systems can be part of the solution…

Four factors to guide investment in battery storage

5. Are cars turning into computers on wheels?

View from side of car moving in a modern night city, blurred motion with lights and cars.

Considering the average number of lines of code per car is anticipated to grow from 200 million in 2020, to as much as 650 million lines by 2025, you could say yes. Vehicle autonomy is now moving far beyond lane departure warnings and blind spot detection, requiring sophisticated radars and cameras. Soon, updating your car’s software could become as routine as updating your smartphone. Connected cars are also generating a huge amount data on driver behavior, vehicle use and location preferences, providing plenty of opportunity for monetization. All of this means auto industry players must quickly adapt, or risk becoming irrelevant. They must assess where the greatest revenue opportunities lie, how quickly they could grow and what exactly will be required to unlock their potential. To help answer these questions, EY carried out an analysis…

Reframe your strategy: The great automotive value shift