How to run a foresight excercise?

(source: EFP foresight guide)

Foresight excercises are complex and highly interactive processes. There is no “one-single” way to organise an excercise. Although each individual excercise will have its own specific characteristics, they should all have in common the following: a good excercise starts with a deep understanding of the context in which it is embedded and a clear set of objectives.

Foresight exercise can be split into five general interconnected phases:

  1. Feasibility assessment: Is foresight appropriate in the context? Can it be linked to action?
  2. Defining the aim and scope of the excercise: What is the objective of the exercise? What are the boundaries, what is taken into account, what is the general issue? What is the time scale and the spatial focus?
  3. Choosing the methods: What are the suitable methods given the context, scope and aims?
  4. Running the excercise: Managing time, people, participants, communications and most importantly the learning process itself.
  5. Follow up:  Did the exercise achieve its goals? Are the outcomes plausible, useful, insightful? Has the process created new learning and networks? What is the relevance for policy making?

Figure 1. Example of a foresight process used in Nordic Hydrogen Energy Foresight 2030

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