World Future Society Conference 2010

This is the 3rd year I’ve attended the WFS Conference and it’s a difficult event to describe.  You might imagine a collection of Nostradamus-like individuals, making predictions about the future, and I’ll admit it; this conference does have a larger proportion of older, bearded men than most conferences I attend.  However, the vast majority of attendees are completely serious professionals who are in the business of making informed predictions and hedging bets against uncertainty.  All of us participate in futuring – at least all of us that have ever made a budget or participated in some kind of strategic planning. The difference between your futuring and the futuring that these folks do is that they’ve gone the extra mile to learn the tools of long-term foresight planning. What follows are the snippets of wisdom (mostly from tweets) that I collected at this year’s WFS Conference. WFS: Scenario Building Workshop (Adam Gordon, @FutureSavvy) Scenario planning is used when your institution is not governed by “well-behaved change.”  The idea is not to make a single prediction about what will happen in the future, but to explore the options, looking for commonalities in the cone of plausibility. If you’d like to see the slides from the Scenario Planning workshop, here’s a link to a 2008 version of Adam Gordon’s presentation. Well-behaved change happens in predictable environments: information rich, not prone to technology...

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