One way to see where a field is going is to check the conferences, what speakers and themes emerge as important. We've done that in the past in this thread. 2011 was a big year for Loop, in terms of research output and conferences, so 2012 is likely to be comparatively quiet. One upcoming event is this June Prague Relativity and Gravitation conference:

http://ae100prg.mff.cuni.cz/program
Here are excerpts from the invited speaker list.

...

Abhay Ashtekar (Institute for Gravitation and the Cosmos, Penn State University, University Park )

T.B.A.[my guess is

**Loop cosmology**: inflation, initial conditions at the bounce, power spectrum]

...

Julian Barbour (Department of Physics, University of Oxford, Oxford)

Prague and the conception of general relativity: Kepler, Mach and Einstein

...

Karel Kuchař (Department of Physics, University of Utah, Salt Lake City )

**Canonical quantum gravity**: Einstein's posthumous anathema

Jerzy Lewandowski (Department of Physics, University of Warsaw, Warsaw)

**Loop quantum gravity: The status report**
...

Hermann Nicolai (Albert-Einstein-Institut Golm, Potsdam)

**Quantum gravity: the view from particle physics**
...

Misao Sasaki (Yukawa Institute for Theoretical Physics, Kyoto University, Kyoto)

Inflation and birth of cosmological perturbations

...

Bernard Schutz (Albert-Einstein-Institute Golm, Potsdam)

Gravity talks: observing the Universe with gravitational waves

Alexei Starobinsky (Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics, Moscow)

f(R) gravity--the most straightforward generalization of the Einstein gravity

Robert Wald (Enrico Fermi Institute, University of Chicago, Chicago)

T.B.A.

Clifford Will (Department of Physics, Washington University, St. Louis)

Testing general relativity: Centenary highlights and future prospects

================

Ashtekar has new quantum cosmology results with coauthors Agullo and Nelson, that have not been posted yet but were presented in seminar by Nelson

http://relativity.phys.lsu.edu/ilqgs/nelson101811.pdf
http://relativity.phys.lsu.edu/ilqgs/nelson101811.wav
http://relativity.phys.lsu.edu/ilqgs/nelson101811.aif
and which will be the subject of an invited presentation by Agullo at the April American Physical Society meeting.

They are important results so it seems possible that Ashtekar will feature the new paper in his Prague talk this June.

================

This year's Marcel Grossmann meeting (July, in Stockholm) has these relevant parallel sessions:

http://www.icra.it/mg/mg13/parallel_sessions.htm
L. Quantum Gravity

QG1 Loop Quantum Gravity, Quantum Geometry, Spin Foams (Jerzy Lewandowski)

QG2 Quantum Gravity Phenomenology (Giovanni Amelino-Camelia)

QG3 Asymptotic Safeness and Symmetry Breaking in Quantum Gravity (Eckehard W. Mielke)

QG4 Loop quantum gravity: cosmology and black holes (Jorge Pullin, Parampreet Singh)

for more information:

http://www.icra.it/mg/mg13/
================