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Abstract: A number of global megatrends are challenging the likelihood and feasibility of options for degrowth: Rising global population and affluence levels, proliferation of westernized lifestyles and production and consumption patterns with associated resource use needs and environmental impacts jeopardize the earth’s carrying capacity. Degrowth in the sense of socially sustainably and equitably reducing materials and energy use and shifting to a focus on welfare instead of economic indicators emerges as one central theme to stay within planetary boundaries. In the context of a German research project, trends and developments supportive to and impeding degrowth are being analysed. While socio-economic acceleration, encompassing increasingly short-term product and consumption cycles counteracts degrowth, emerging new mental models and business models towards simplicity and product-service-systems support degrowth. Knowledge on relevant trends and their causal linkages is key to identifying promising leverage points for policies supporting degrowth.