What is foresight?

What is strategic foresight?– Foresight is the ability to see what may happen in the future. When there is increasingly rapid change and growing uncertainty, strategic foresight helps organizations look ahead, provide insight into what might happen in the future, and be better prepared.

Scenario planning can be used to produce strategic foresight. Scenarios are alternative futures of key drivers of uncertainty. Scenarios are critically assessed, and plans created by gathering input from people across multiple disciplines. Actions are based on leading indicators for the scenarios.

Is strategic foresight the same as forecasting?

No. Strategic foresight does not attempt to predict the future or attempt to offer definitive answers. There are no hard facts about the future and the data is always incomplete. The objective is t0 expand thinking to scenarios which don’t exist today but plausible in the future and should be assessed.

How can strategic foresight be used for defining strategies?

Strategic foresight poses questions which might never have been considered in developing a strategy. This can reveal hidden biases, faulty assumptions, as well as opportunity gaps.

What are the benefits of strategic foresight?

It can provide a competitive advantage by enabling an organization to be more resilient. When aspects of a scenario become reality, organizations can react quickly and confidently because plans have already been thoughtfully defined.

Strategic foresight can also trigger innovation. Addressing challenges posed in alternative future scenarios can unlock new ideas and solutions.

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