5 questions for futurologist Sven Gábor Jánszky
1. Mr. Jánszky, what attributes best describe you as a person?
Inquisitive, strategic, freedom loving.
2. Why did you become a futurologist and how long have you been working in this profession?
I founded my Institute 17 years ago. We are now the largest independent future research institute in Europe. Many of our current employees simply studied future research. This was impossible when I was younger. I first became a journalist and worked for the German television channel ARD for more than ten years. However, changes were no longer being made there. I then resigned and set up the current "2b AHEAD“ Institute after two or three detours.
3. How did you arrive at the special topic of medical technology? What are the special or challenging aspects of this topic?
We futurologists believe that human health represents the industry with the biggest potential for change in the next ten years. The reason is very simple: the human body is the world's most valuable object. And secondly, it still cannot be measured in real time. However, as soon as real-time data from the body are available every second, enormous new business models for optimisation and prediction will be created. This will take place in the next few years.
4. Let's now take a look at current trends. Additive manufacturing – i.e. industrial 3D printing – is regarded as a great technical advance. In your opinion, where will this technology lead us to in medicine?
Quite clearly to spare part organs and medical food. Whereas it will probably take between 20 and 30 years until mass production of hearts and livers is achieved through tissue engineering, it will be possible to adaptively produce our food with 3D printers in ten years time. Adaptive means that it will be adapted individually depending on the particular situation. If your health assistant recognises that your values are deteriorating, a 3D printer will provide you with precisely the dose of bacteria cocktails in yoghurt, milk, meat or cheese which your body needs to recover. This medical food will prolong life considerably, even within the next ten years.
5. What role will patients play in further technical development in medical technology? What influence will they have?
Patients will initially be given their body data. As soon as patients have their real-time body data, they will decide whom they can entrust their data to so that they become healthy again. In the majority of cases this will not be doctors. Patients will therefore play the leading role. However, the most important aspect is that they are no longer small passive patients and doctors are no longer experts. Patients will then be confident customers and doctors will be service providers … one of many service providers in the health network of a customer.