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GFAR-Secretariat@fao.org
GFAR Webinar
Beyond decision making:
Foresight as a process for improving
attitude towards change
Presenters
• Oluwabunmi Ajilore - Introduction (GFAR Secretariat)
• Tanja Hichert (Stellenbosch University)
• Katindi Sivi...
Beyond decision making: Foresight as a process for
improving attitude towards change
What is foresight?
• In plain terms, ...
Foresight as seen by GFAR
•A systematic, participatory and multi-
disciplinary approach to explore mid- to
long-term futur...
Why this webinar?
•The webinar aims to bring together foresight
experts with field experience and other actors
interested ...
GFAR WEBINAR: BEYOND DECISION-
MAKING: FORESIGHT AS A PROCESS
FOR IMPROVING ATTITUDE TOWARDS
CHANGE
Tanja Hichert
27 June ...
Hichert & AssociatHichert & Associat
IT’S A VUCA WORLD
• Volatility reflects the speed and
turbulence of change.
• Uncerta...
Hichert & AssociatHichert & Associat
… an interdisciplinary “collection
of methods, theories, and
findings” that helps peo...
Hichert & Associat
THE BENEFIT OF SCENARIOS
 Innovative thinking
Scenarios explore intractable or undiscussed uncertainti...
Hichert & Associat
AT THE MOST BASIC LEVEL SCENARIOS
EXPLORE ALTERNATIVE FUTURES
The present The path The future
FORECAST
...
POLITICS FOR THE GREATER GOOD
“WALKING THE TALK”
STAGNANT &
ONE-DIMENSIONAL
ECONOMY
POLITICS FOR THE SELFISH FEW
GROWING &...
World Economic Forum
2016 Global Risks
“Interconnection Map”
Hichert & Associat
‘AMBIENT FUTURES’
BUILD A RADAR SCREEN
Katindi Sivi-Njonjo
Use of foresight for changing attitude
LongView Consult, Kenya
1. Use of foresight to change attitude
Awareness is a first revelatory/interpretive step.
• Using very simple everyday exp...
2. Effective foresight methods to employ
• There is no single superior foresight method. I use both statistically-based
an...
3. Transition from pre-active forecast planners to
pro-active foresight seekers?
(i) Show the value of coming up with mult...
Present
The ‘Official’
Future
What scenarios are not: Forecasts!
Source: Adopted from Schwartz (1991)
Multiple
Paths
Current realities
(Mental maps)
Many
futures,
different
truths
and
realities
Source: Adopted from Rafael Ra...
(ii) Enhance deep understanding of issues
The Iceberg analogy is a
practical way to enable
practitioners & decision
makers...
(iii) Once these simple conceptual issues are out of the way,
converting this knowledge to a habit of anticipating the
fut...
4. Skills and resources required
There is no skill needed in my view. However, one needs to invest in:
• Time as a resourc...
5. Role participatory foresight can play
• The whole foresight exercise has to include people from those different spaces
...
Robin Bourgeois
Foresight and attitude change
CIRAD/Centre for the Study of Governance
Innovation (GovInn)
Future literacy
as a capability
Foresight and attitude to change
importance of “internal
drivers”, forces they can
control...
“Effective” foresight methods?
“Activist” objectives using
visioning (building a desirable
future), by NGOs and research
c...
Distribution of foresight cases according to the origin of the request
Future literacy
as a capability
Skills and resources
Emancipation
as a process
Clear conceptual
posture about
using the fu...
Inclusive decision making
Role of development organizations
Support skills development and a
new attitude of local stakeho...
Agent A
Agent B
Habits: disposition/
propensions à se
comporter d’une
certaine façon dans
certaines circonstances
- acquis...
Questions/Remarks
Beyond decision making: Foresight as a process for improving attitude towards change
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Beyond decision making: Foresight as a process for improving attitude towards change

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This presentation was used in the GFAR webinar on "Beyond decision making: Foresight as a process for improving attitude towards change" --

The announcement blogpost was published here: https://blog.gfar.net/2017/06/07/gfar-webinar-beyond-decision-making-foresight-as-a-process-for-improving-attitude-towards-change/

You can find the full recording of this webinar here: https://youtu.be/8tzz5vNEhZ4

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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Beyond decision making: Foresight as a process for improving attitude towards change

  1. 1. GFAR-Secretariat@fao.org GFAR Webinar Beyond decision making: Foresight as a process for improving attitude towards change
  2. 2. Presenters • Oluwabunmi Ajilore - Introduction (GFAR Secretariat) • Tanja Hichert (Stellenbosch University) • Katindi Sivi Njonjo (LongView Consult, Kenya) • Robin Bourgeois (CIRAD/GovInn) • Q & A Moderators: Emmie Wachira (YPARD)/Peter Casier (GFAR)
  3. 3. Beyond decision making: Foresight as a process for improving attitude towards change What is foresight? • In plain terms, foresight is a term often used to describe a broad range of works that looks at exploring what the future might look like.
  4. 4. Foresight as seen by GFAR •A systematic, participatory and multi- disciplinary approach to explore mid- to long-term futures and drivers of change. - http://www.fao.org/docs/eims/upload/315951/Glossary%20of%20Terms.pdf
  5. 5. Why this webinar? •The webinar aims to bring together foresight experts with field experience and other actors interested in foresight, to interact and share their views on foresight as a method to influence change.
  6. 6. GFAR WEBINAR: BEYOND DECISION- MAKING: FORESIGHT AS A PROCESS FOR IMPROVING ATTITUDE TOWARDS CHANGE Tanja Hichert 27 June 2017
  7. 7. Hichert & AssociatHichert & Associat IT’S A VUCA WORLD • Volatility reflects the speed and turbulence of change. • Uncertainty means that outcomes, even from familiar actions, are less predictable. • Complexity indicates the vastness of interdependencies in globally connected economies and societies. • And ambiguity conveys the multitude of options and potential outcomes resulting from them McNulty
  8. 8. Hichert & AssociatHichert & Associat … an interdisciplinary “collection of methods, theories, and findings” that helps people to ‘think constructively about the future’ . … “the rigorous art of imagining” “…to pursue the unknown FORESIGHT & FUTURES THINKING C Bland, J. & Westlake
  9. 9. Hichert & Associat THE BENEFIT OF SCENARIOS  Innovative thinking Scenarios explore intractable or undiscussed uncertainties, encouraging broader thinking and countering groupthink.  Shared language Scenarios create a shorthand terminology that can be understood intuitively across and beyond an organisation.  Increased cooperation Scenarios incorporate multiple worldviews across traditional language and cultural barriers, so creating the potential to achieve fair process and deliver fair outcome.  Avoidance of costly mistakes The collective nature of scenario building is resource intensive, yet considering 'what if?' is much cheaper and simpler than 'if only' regrets.
  10. 10. Hichert & Associat AT THE MOST BASIC LEVEL SCENARIOS EXPLORE ALTERNATIVE FUTURES The present The path The future FORECAST SCENARIOS
  11. 11. POLITICS FOR THE GREATER GOOD “WALKING THE TALK” STAGNANT & ONE-DIMENSIONAL ECONOMY POLITICS FOR THE SELFISH FEW GROWING & DIVERSIFIED ECONOMY MKAKA NDI UCHI “Land of milk & honey” WOKANKHA “Struggling” WOTSALIRA “Un-progressive” MBOMBO “Greedy”
  12. 12. World Economic Forum 2016 Global Risks “Interconnection Map”
  13. 13. Hichert & Associat ‘AMBIENT FUTURES’
  14. 14. BUILD A RADAR SCREEN
  15. 15. Katindi Sivi-Njonjo Use of foresight for changing attitude LongView Consult, Kenya
  16. 16. 1. Use of foresight to change attitude Awareness is a first revelatory/interpretive step. • Using very simple everyday explanations of what foresight is or is not is key to demystify the concept and demonstrate that we can make it a conscious exercise to benefit from • Learning about the basics of foresight such as how it works through case studies, testimonials, movies but also to manage expectations (that you are not predicting the future) • Learning through variety of perspectives hence the need for a wider inclusion of participants outside the main ‘knowledge domain’ of the subject matter to enable peer learning. • Doing trends analysis as a basis for discussing variables and how they could pan out in the future statistically has also helped jumpstart futures conversations. However, care should be taken not to have a fixed mind-set about the variable.
  17. 17. 2. Effective foresight methods to employ • There is no single superior foresight method. I use both statistically-based and intuition-driven such as: 1. Trends analysis i.e. not just of the variables directly related to the subject but also others indirectly involved in the subject matter 2. Scenarios story building 3. Visioning 4. Back casting 5. Strategic planning • They are simple less technical methods for discussing the probable future. I also explain and avoid all the jargon that comes with the methodologies
  18. 18. 3. Transition from pre-active forecast planners to pro-active foresight seekers? (i) Show the value of coming up with multiple probabilities than one ‘official’ future by revisiting common stories of the failure of prediction (e.g. Brexit or relying on polls only to predict election outcomes like the case of President Trump v.s Hilary) and the better preparedness that comes with foresight of multiple futures (e.g. shell case study or more local examples). Once people internalize the benefits and costs of forecasts vs. foresight, they begin to get the incentive to change.
  19. 19. Present The ‘Official’ Future What scenarios are not: Forecasts! Source: Adopted from Schwartz (1991)
  20. 20. Multiple Paths Current realities (Mental maps) Many futures, different truths and realities Source: Adopted from Rafael Ramirez Pastevents& forcesshapingthe present Time Bring the future back into the present (back- casting) to strategize Learningjourney withhighlevel analysis Overall Scenarios framework The present Alternative Future Images
  21. 21. (ii) Enhance deep understanding of issues The Iceberg analogy is a practical way to enable practitioners & decision makers to adopt and use a systems perspective to deeply understand the issues at hand and to appreciate how different variables are inter- connected and what they can produce (power of imagination).
  22. 22. (iii) Once these simple conceptual issues are out of the way, converting this knowledge to a habit of anticipating the future, across all levels of the social realm is the more difficult part. Learning by doing becomes the next logical step towards this journey by focusing on the foresight exercise at hand. Demonstrating possible consequences of non-action within the stories and appealing to the mind about the possibilities that could be achieved if the most strategic action is taken usually incentivises people. This has to be very deliberate More importantly however is to move beyond the foresight stories to strategic action planning which involves solutions.
  23. 23. 4. Skills and resources required There is no skill needed in my view. However, one needs to invest in: • Time as a resource to engage because the process is rigorous and time consuming • Willingness to learn a new way of doing things… the rigidity is not very helpful • Consistent tracking of variables over a long period of time especially in regions where data is a big challenge e.g. yields • Learning by doing (through initial foresight exercise but also challenging the group to undertake many more foresight exercises
  24. 24. 5. Role participatory foresight can play • The whole foresight exercise has to include people from those different spaces from the beginning (the planning stage; commitment to engaging in the transformational nature of foresight) Improving their ability to participate in the ways their futures are determined • Understanding their rights and responsibilities especially for groups that are poor and illiterate Role can development organisations play in facilitating this • Long term funding and human resource capability; • continuous facilitation of foresight groups and identifying community leaders within the group to learn from the facilitators and take on leadership roles during the foresight exercises and for them to know that they are being prepared to continue the process in the long-term. Important Note: Training of trainers model did not work in the CCAFs project (an foresight exercise done in East Africa to bring the nexus between food security, environment and agriculture). It was done too soon after the exercise with people who had interacted with the exercise just that once; it was facilitated by an outsider who was an academic – it became too complex for simple farmers and government policy makers to even follow what was going on).
  25. 25. Robin Bourgeois Foresight and attitude change CIRAD/Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation (GovInn)
  26. 26. Future literacy as a capability Foresight and attitude to change importance of “internal drivers”, forces they can control or influence Importance of co- elaborative processes, users become doers Local communities and stakeholders confident in shaping the future by acting in the present Local people and organization able to use the future to sense and make sense of the present The grassroots foresight initiative Emancipation as a process Flores Island, Indonesia Himalayan region, India Pahlawan Island, Philippines
  27. 27. “Effective” foresight methods? “Activist” objectives using visioning (building a desirable future), by NGOs and research centers working with local communities. Community visioning and action plan in Cambodia Policy formulation objectives using critical uncertainties (building a matrix of contextual scenarios), by organizations working with policy makers Action research objectives using co-elaborative scenario building (creating a set of internal scenarios), used when working with multiple stakeholders for territorial development Regional scenario for East Africa and South Asia Grassroots foresight initiative in Cameroon
  28. 28. Distribution of foresight cases according to the origin of the request
  29. 29. Future literacy as a capability Skills and resources Emancipation as a process Clear conceptual posture about using the future Practical training: learning by doing Immediate practice through real field implementation 1 2 3 4 Design Act ReflectRevise
  30. 30. Inclusive decision making Role of development organizations Support skills development and a new attitude of local stakeholders Work on institutional arrangements and habits of behavior Future literacy as a capability Local communities and stakeholders confident in shaping the future by acting in the present Local people and organization able to use the future to sense and make sense of the present Emancipation as a process Decision making Human Agency Several factors influence and condition the possibility to turn a newly acquired human capability into human agency Facilitate the acquisition of futures literacy AND simultaneously reduce the obstacles that will impede future-literate stakeholders to act as agents of change
  31. 31. Agent A Agent B Habits: disposition/ propensions à se comporter d’une certaine façon dans certaines circonstances - acquis - innés - innés - acquis Transaction: acquisition et aliénation de droits de propriété et de liberté Règle: X fait Y1 Institutions: systèmes de règles établies et encastrées qui structurent les interactions sociales Institutions: système de règles établies et encastrées qui structurent les interactions sociales Institutions: système de règles établies et encastrées qui structurent les interactions sociales Structures sociales Essai de formalisation d’un cadre conceptuel (suite): Des structures aux habits ordre Règle: X fait Y3 Règle: X fait Y4 Règle: X fait Y2 Habits: disposition/ propensions à se comporter d’une certaine façon dans certaines circonstances conflit/dépendance conflit/dépendance contrainte conformit é contrainte conformit é Agent A Agent B Habits: disposition/ propensions à se comporter d’une certaine façon dans certaines circonstances - innés - acquis - acquis - innés Transaction: acquisition et aliénation de droits de propriété et de liberté Règle: X fait Y1 Institutions: systèmes de règles établies et encastrées qui structurent les interactions sociales Institutions: système de règles établies et encastrées qui structurent les interactions sociales Institutions: système de règles établies et encastrées qui structurent les interactions sociales Structures sociales Essai de formalisation d’un cadre conceptuel: Des habits aux structures répétition imitation Règle: X fait Y3 Règle: X fait Y4 Règle: X fait Y2 Habits: disposition/ propensions à se comporter d’une certaine façon dans certaines circonstances conflit/dépendance conflit/dépendance
  32. 32. Questions/Remarks

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