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Futures Thinking

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Futures Thinking

What techniques are used in Futures Thinking, how and why do we use them? You can find out about the some of the main ones from our section on Techniques. These give a flavour of our approach, but each project is different and we can bring many techniques to bear. For scenario planning in particular, you may like to read our new Scenario Planning Primer which explains the approach in some detail.

We have world-class experience of horizon scanning, scenario planning, strategy and policy, but our range of expertise is much wider. We also understand political, international and regulatory risk, economic uncertainty, social and cultural change, and the opportunities offered by technology. We have pulled together a compendium of global Drivers of Change, which you may find interesting. It is based on work we have done over the years on drivers and trends. We will continue to update the list in the future. (Current update is September 2018)

Forecasting from known trends is a necessary starting point, but the further one looks ahead the wider the range of uncertainty. Emerging technologies, changing social attitudes and the general economic environment will combine to distort the implicit assumptions behind any strategy. We help you seek out “early warning signals” of these changes. And then there are major shocks to the system – so-called “wild cards” like the financial crisis of 2008 – which can wreck carefully produced projections.

To be effective horizon scanning has to be part of a wider Foresight process. We use an approach based on the EU’s DG Research & Innovation:

strategy cycle 

SAMI can work with you to progress through each phase of this cycle, with a primary emphasis on “Sense-making”.

There is no one “real” future, simply many alternative futures – including the ones you can create yourself. Once you start to shrug off the “group-think” of everyday planning, you can imagine new worlds – good and bad – and start to plot your path, aware of change, to a stronger strategy.

This is why we believe in helping you make ROBUST DECISIONS IN UNCERTAIN TIMES.

SAMI Consulting - The home of scenario planning

Foresight and Strategy
Foresight and Strategy is a monthly email round-up of issues we think might interest strategists and futurists.

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site last updated
10 July 2019

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