Everyone has a natural instinct to be concerned about the future and virtually everyone at various points and in various ways tries to wrestle with the question, “What will the future bring?” Living in a world of apparently rapid change, we are more concerned than ever with the future. So, let’s think of foresight simply as insight into how and why the future will be different from today. It is not about the ability to see the future before it happens.
Intended for managers and executives in need of easy-to-apply tools that can be used immediately within organizations,4 Steps to the Futureis written as a guidebook. Readers who are looking for a resource that provides them the guidance and tools to conduct a foresight project themselves, or who have to lead an upcoming foresight effort, will find this book an indispensable guide.
"This is an outstanding "how-to" book for anyone wanting to get started in the art and science of futures and forecasting. Dr. Lum struck the perfect balance of description, instruction, practicality and humor in this easy to read volume. If you are simply interested in learning more about the field of futures or are preparing to host your own workshop, this is the place to start."-Stephen D. Kiser, PhD, Senior Innovator for US Pacific Command, former Special Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
We are closer now to 2030 than we are to the start of the new millennium (2000). The technologies we are exploring today are radically going to redefine the next age of humanity. This next age is called the Augmented Age, because of how radically embedded and personal technology will augment
The global financial crisis has already inspired over a thousand books, not to mention myriad articles, blogs, and other commentary. Some are simply expressions of anger. Others document the hole we find ourselves in or perform forensics on how we nearly buried ourselves alive. Fewer focus on what is to be
To realize the current global stage, all you need to do is to look at your dinner table! It’s full of food from the four corners of the World; Salmon from Chile, sauce and spices from Brazil. Your dishes might be from China or Hungary, and glassware from the Czech Republic.
I’ve been in this life for fifty years, been trying to work out its riddle for forty-two, and been keeping diaries of clues to that riddle for the last thirty-five. Notes about successes and failures, joys and sorrows, things that made me marvel, and things that made me laugh out loud.
Let’s think of foresight simply as insight into how and why the future will be different from today. It is not about the ability to see the future before it happens.
Developing a better understanding of the past doesn’t tell us what will happen in the future, but it does give us an appreciation for the patterns that recur, the cycles that might be at work, and the roles that chance and randomness have played in creating our present.
· In terms of improving our thinking about the future, reviewing history helps to remind us of the important changes that have already occurred in our industry or community.
A historical review reminds us that not every expected transformation actually came to pass; some things have remained largely unchanged over history. Reviewing what has changed, what has remained the same and why helps us find the important patterns and relationships that drive or shape change.
· While the present is just a transitory moment between what was and what might be, for our purposes the Present is where we take a look at all of the “signals” about change that we presently think we are receiving.
While there’s potentially a lot of sophistication that can go into future thinking and foresight work, even a few basic questions and process points can go a long way to creating informed and critical discussions within organizations.
· Vision is “an articulation of the organization’s preferred future, informed by purpose, foresight, and aspiration.”
Commonly referred to as “early indicators,” these are signs your organization would use to anticipate one or more of the scenarios coming to pass.