Canada's predictions: What is in store for 2020?

Canadians predict rising global temperatures and no improvement in the global economy.

The author(s)

  • Sean Simpson Vice President, Canada, Public Affairs
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Rising TemperaturesThe World Around Us

Three-quarters (75%) of Canadians predict that average global temperatures will increase in 2020, and this prediction is echoed globally across respondents from all 33 countries (77%). This was also a top prediction last year as 78% of global respondents believed that temperatures would rise in 2019.

Compared to the rest of the world, Canada is not as concerned about public unrest in the country. 56% of people around the world, and 58% of Americans believe that there will likely be large-scale public unrest in their country to protest the way it is being run, compared to only 4 in 10 (42%) Canadians who fear the same in their country. Columbia, Chile, France, and South Africa are most wary of such a situation arising.

Similarly, Canadians are also less concerned about natural disaster compared to the global respondents. 6 in 10 Canadians (59%) feel it is unlikely a major natural disaster will impact their town/city, while only half (51%) of respondents across the 33 markets find this to be an unlikely scenario.

While nearly two-thirds (65%, +3 points since 2018) of global respondents reflect that 2019 was a bad year for their country, comparatively, only half (54%) of Canadians think that 2019 was a bad year for Canada. Pessimistic reflections of 2019 in their country, are highest in Chile, Argentina, Hong Kong, and South Korea.

TrumpThe World Beyond Us

At par with global respondents (32%), only a third (28%) of Canadians find it is likely that a major terrorist attack will be carried out in their country, while half (50%) find it unlikely. In comparison, south of the border, 40% of Americans find a terrorist attack in 2020 to be likely in their country.

A minority of 4 in 10 global respondents (36%) or Canadians (39%) believe it is likely that Trump will be-re-elected, while equal proportions find it unlikely. For context, even in the United States, his re-election is predicted by less than half (46%), albeit a higher proportion than Canada.

EconomyThe Wealth of Nations

Six in 10 (58%) Canadians are pessimistic about a stronger global economy in 2020, compared to only half (48%) globally or 4 in 10 Americans (41%). Canada falls in the bottom 10 countries in terms of optimism for the economic future, but the outlook is bleakest in France, Belgium, Italy, Japan, Spain, and Sweden, where at least two-thirds do not agree that the economy will be strongly.

However, despite cynicism for the economic future, only a third of Canadians (31%) believe that the major stock markets around the world will crash, putting them at par with global respondents (36%).

TechnologyTechnology and Data

Eight in 10 Canadians (80%) and global respondents (78%) think it is likely that people will spend more time online than watching TV in 2020. However, only half of Canadians (52%) and global respondents (51%) predict that they will watch more TV from streaming services than over the air, cable, or satellite TV. This is not the case in China or India where up to three-quarters find it likely that they will be opting for more streaming services.

Use of technology and data security go hand in hand. 43% of Canadians predict that in 2020, one of their online accounts (email, social media, banking) will be hacked into, compared to 37% of people globally. Canada places itself in the top 10 countries concerned with their data security with Russia topping the list, as six in 10 Russians find it likely they will be hacked.

ResolutionsOn a personal note….

Compared to their evaluation of 2018, there has been a significant drop in the proportion of Canadians who think that 2019 was bad for them and their family (42%, down 5 points). In comparison, half of global respondents felt 2019 was bad for them and their family (50%, up 4 points vs. evaluation of 2018).

There is evidence that people continue to hope for even better, because not only was 2019 not a bad year for most Canadians, three-quarters (77%) are optimistic that 2020 will be a better year for them than 2019 was. Looking forward, two-thirds of Canadians (66%) will set personal resolutions to do things for themselves and others in 2020, although the intention to set resolutions is higher globally (76%).

OlympicsAnd on a lighter note….

In true Canadian fashion, displaying overall neutrality, over a third of Canadians (36%) predict that Canada will win more medals in the 2020 Summer Olympics than four years ago, while another third (31%) find it unlikely.

Across all markets, more than 4 in 10 (43%) of people globally think their country will win more medals in the 2020 Summer Olympics, while a third (33%) find it unlikely. India, Philippines, and China display the most confidence in their 2020 olympic athletes, as three-quarters find it likely that their country will win more medals this time.

Unlikely outcomes for 2020 in the eyes of Canadians

Canadians are least likely to believe that aliens will visit the earth, as 72% find this to be an unlikely situation, compared to 66% of global respondents across all 33 markets. Two thirds (63%) of Canadians find it unlikely that self-driving cars will become the norm in their city, compared to only half (53%) of global respondents who find this to be an unlikely possibility. The most unlikely outcomes as per a majority of Canadians include:  

  • Aliens will visit the earth (72% Unlikely)
  • Self-driving cars will become a usual sight on the streets of my town/city (63% Unlikely)
  • I will feel lonely most of the time (62% Unlikely)
  • There will be a major natural disaster that will have an impact on people in my town/city (59% Unlikely)
  • Women will be paid the same as men for the same work (53% Unlikely)
  • I will use social media less (53% Unlikely, 29% Likely-down 5 points since 2019 so, fewer people are predicting that they will reduce their social media usage)

Global Predictions: Most likely to occur in 2020

  • Nearly 8 in 10 (78%) of respondents globally believe that world over, people will spend more time online than watching TV (80% among Canadians)
  • Three-quarters (77%) of global respondents predict that global temperatures will increase (75% among Canadians)
  • Six in 10 (58%) global respondents think traffic in their area will likely get worse (61% among Canadians)
  • Half (51%) of respondents predict that they will watch more TV from streaming services than over the air, cable, or satellite TV (52% among Canadians)
  • Nearly 6 in 10 (56%) of global respondents think it likely that there will be large-scale public unrest (such as protests or riots) in [home country] to protest against the way the country is being run (42% among Canadians)

Technical note

22,512 interviews were conducted between November 22 and December 6, 2019, among adults aged 18-64 in the US and Canada, and adults aged 16-64 in all other countries.

Out of these total interviews, 1000 among them were conducted particularly in Canada.

The survey was conducted in 33 markets around the world via the Ipsos Online Panel system. These are Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and the United States.

17 of the 32 countries surveyed online generate nationally representative samples in their countries. Brazil, Chile, China, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, Peru, Philippines, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa and Turkey produce a national sample that is more urban & educated, and with higher incomes than their fellow citizens.  We refer to these respondents as “Upper Deck Consumer Citizens”.  They are not nationally representative of their country.

Where results do not sum to 100, this may be due to computer rounding, multiple responses or the exclusion of don't knows or not stated responses.



The author(s)

  • Sean Simpson Vice President, Canada, Public Affairs