Why Futures & Foresight is not as Innate as You Think

Originally published December 15, 2020
Alex Fegnani

“Often times, when attending introductory talks or workshops on futures studies, foresight, or scenario planning (from now, futures & foresight for short), I’ve noticed that the speaker would attempt to endear the audience to futures & foresight by stating upfront that, in its simplest form, this field of inquiry is something that human beings already do every day, not dissimilar to thinking about possible future career options, or about different times to do grocery shopping the next day. I also noticed that such attempts would often have a counterproductive effect. Unless this issue is deliberately clarified, the audience would leave the room thinking that futures & foresight is nothing special, as it is just what they have already been doing in their minds, perhaps with the addition of an extra dose of mental effort. This is particularly the case for managers who have been considering different “scenarios” when strategizing…..”

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