A Short History of Foresight

A short version of the history of foresight and futures studies.

A Short History of Foresight

This is an extract from my PhD thesis that provides a summary overview of the history of foresight. Warning: it’s a long read with references, so you can download a PDF version by clicking the red button.

If you cite or re-use anything from this history, please use the following as a reference: Maree Conway, Foresight Futures, 2021. Thanks.

Humans have used many ways to call on the future such as oracles, divination, prophesy and palmistry (Milojević 2002; Godhe & Goode 2018). As Bell (2009, p. 2) writes: “Thinking about the future … is not new … In every known society, people have conceptions of time and the future, even though some of their conceptions appear diverse”. Andersson’s timeline of futures studies (2007) demonstrates how early oral and mystic approaches evolved over time to the point where thinking about the future was formalised as the field of Futures Studies in the post-World War II period. Histories of Western futures studies are numerous and include Moll (1996); Bell (2009); Masini (2006); Jemala (2010); Kuosa (2009, 2011); Seefried (2014); Son (2015); and Andersson (2018). Milojević (2002) notes that the modern iteration of thinking about the future is “firmly based within the Western intellectual tradition and has emerged from within the Western epistemological framework”, a constraint that did not break down until the late twentieth/early twenty-first centuries (Sardar 1999). Common across these histories is viewing Futures Studies and Foresight (FSF) as evolving in stages, and Schultz (2016, p. 5–7) provides a succinct summary of the major ‘waves of futures thinking’ since ancient times:

  1. Oral tradition – the “oral wave of shamans and mystics”;
  2. Early written age – early macrohistorians outside Europe and early European writings about the future;
  3. Extraction and enlightenment – a wave “deeply embedded in the idea of progress through science, technology and rationalism”;
  4. Systems and cybernetics – post World War II, when “grand scale planning and forecasting” saw the rise of systems science and futures studies, the first formal futures organisations and conferences and teaching futures in Europe and the USA; and
  5. Complexity and emergence – the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries where “a sea change from the more technocratic and deterministic theories and approaches” of the last wave was marked by new approaches that saw the “melding of futures theory with integral philosophy” and models to “dig into the social and cultural substructures of changing human systems”.

In the fifth wave too, Schultz (2016, p. 7) identifies the rise of chaos and complexity theory as providing “enhanced understanding of the dynamics of intertwined human and planetary systems [providing] a paradigm of change as an emergent property of complex, adaptive, living systems, emergent but rarely predictable.” Engaging with complexity is now a primary FSF focus.

Andersson’s book The Future of the World: Futurology, Futurists, and the Struggle for the Post-Cold War Imagination (2018) provides a recent in-depth analysis of the emergence of the modern futures field, and it would be difficult to improve on her detailed analysis, which moves from the need for historians to remember the future, the future as a moral imperative, a very detailed discussion of the emergence of modern futures across the world, and an exploration of the works of futurists – all based in a frame of shifting ideologies and approaches as the world recovered from and splintered after World War II, when, as Magda McHale (1993, p. 55) indicated, “old problems needed urgent attention in this changed global environment.” What follows should then be viewed as a ‘‘potted history”, one shaped by my interpretation of what is a sizeable literature.

Many writers and thinkers have made significant contributions to the evolution of the modern futures field, particularly in the last two waves defined by Schultz. Bell (2001, p. 140), for example, devotes half a page to simply listing who he calls “exemplars of the futures field.” H.G. Wells (1932) and his call for professors of foresight is usually cited in any history, as is Flectheim’s (1945) coining of the word ‘futurology’ to define thinking about the future. The early work around ‘prospective’ of Bertrand de Jouvenel (2012, first edition 1967), and Berger (Cournand & Levy 1973) in France in the 1950s and 1960s introduced the concept of ‘building the future’, a philosophy based on  seeing the future as “a realm of freedom, power and will” (de Jouvenel 2004, p. 10). This is a period Bell (2009, p. 20) describes as “clearly an incubator for the modern futurist movement.” In the 1970s Polak’s defining of the importance of ‘the image of the future’ for societies in The Image of the Future (1973) made images and imaginations valid topics of investigation. McHale (1969, 1973), John McHale and Magda McHale (1976); Helmer (1972, 1975), Boucher (1977), Linstone (1977) and Elise Boulding (1979) among others, developed and reviewed futures approaches, methods and research for use in governments and organisations in this decade. Boulding’s (1979) concept of the 200-year present makes it clear that both what exists in the present has not always existed and so is not fixed, and the consequent critical importance of exploring different images of the future. Two seminal publications often cited from these times are Silent Spring (Carson 1962) and Limits to Growth (Meadows et al. 1972), both of which challenged existing beliefs and assumptions about how humans use the physical world, and invoke a futures perspective to make the case for change in the present; both are also considered to underpin the subsequent emergence of the environmental movement.

The 1970s and 1980s marked the origins and increasing use of scenario planning, an approach usually attributed to the work of Pierre Wack and his Shell colleagues in the 1970s, but General Electric also used scenario planning for future consumer markets in that decade (Millett 2017). Scenario planning as a strategic approach spread across organisations from that time and has been variously considered to be a theory (Chermack 2004, 2005; Derbyshire 2019), a methodology (Markley 2011; Kahane 2012; Millett 2017), and a method (Bishop, Hines & Collins 2007; Bowman et al. 2013). It is also an approach used beyond futures studies in organisational strategy development in general (Tibbs 1999; Godet 2000; Conway 2003; Lindgren & Bandhold 2009), and it has been adapted and revised to suit the practitioner and the context (Johansson, Lassbo & Nehls 2013; Cairns et al. 2017). Like FSF, scenario planning comes in two varieties, one that is quantitative in nature that uses modelling and forecasting, and the other that uses more interpretive and social constructionist approaches that are sometimes termed ‘scenario thinking’ and ‘scenario learning’ to disassociate the process from more formulaic strategic planning (Lüdeke 2013; Amer, Daim & Jetter 2013). The value of developing scenarios has been questioned (Slaughter 2002; Molitor 2009), and its dominance as a method is probably why claims are made that methods dominate the futures studies field at the expense of theory and methodology (Yeoman & Curry 2019; Curry 2020a). One critical contribution of this method, however, is that it brought imagination into organisations as a legitimate activity, albeit disguised in a planning process.

In the 1990s, the work of many – such as Dator (1995, 1998);  Slaughter (1998, 1999b, 1999a), Inayatullah (1990, 1993; 1998), Masini (1997, 1998), Galtung (1996), and Nandy (1996) among others – continued to develop the field creating a body of literature that has contributed to FSF being considered as a legitimate field of inquiry. Bell (2009) published the first edition of his two-volume work on the Foundations of Futures Studies in 1997 and Slaughter (1995) edited the first edition of his Knowledge Base of Futures Studies in this decade. There was also a cogent reminder from Sardar (1993, p. 2) who pointed out that:

The evolution of futures studies since World War II has followed a well-defined pattern: at each phase of its development, future studies has used the dominant relationship between Western and non-Western cultures to define itself and delineate its scope and areas of research … future studies is increasingly becoming an instrument for the marginalization of non-Western cultures from the future.

During the following years, FSF did move beyond its initial Western boundaries. Son (2015, p. 120) notes “the rise of worldwide discourse on global futures”, and Gidley (2016, p. 25) describes FSF now as “a transdisciplinary, transnational, and multisectoral field that includes thousands of academics and practitioners, many of whom operate globally.” The first decades of the twenty-first century saw what Schultz (2012, p. 7) calls “a sea change from the more technocratic and deterministic theories and approaches which had served it since the 1950s”. This was a major shift towards a more integral and inclusive stance in futures studies, with the rise of Integral Futures (Hayward 2008; Slaughter  1999a, 2008b, 2016; Voros 2008), participatory futures (van der Helm 2007; Rhisiart 2013; Nikolova 2014; Oteros-Rozas et al. 2015; Kelliher & Byrne 2015), anticipatory action learning (Stevenson 2002; Inayatullah 2006), experiential futures (Candy & Dunagan 2007; Candy et al. 2016; Cuhls & Daheim 2017), ‘gaming the future’ (McGonigal 2011; Candy 2015; Stein, Watson & Candy 2015), and a strengthening connection between futures studies and design thinking (Selin et al. 2015; Hines & Zindato 2016; Buehring & Liedtka 2018) – all of which have expanded access to futures work beyond professionals. As Schultz (2016, p. 7) writes: “The futures [sic] are now for everyone to envision.”

While FSF today may have conflicting terminology and is claimed by many to be a field in search of a theory, it is considered here to be an established field which Bell (2002, p. 237) suggested is less fragmented compared to other academic disciplines. There are professional associations (notably the World Futures Studies Federations and the Association of Professional Futurists), journals and conferences – all of which Abbott (1991) defines as indicators of professionalisation. There are many people working full-time who count themselves as ‘futurists’, irrespective of whether they are trained as professional futurists, academic futurists, or practitioners. There are numerous foresight methods (Slaughter 2002; Keenan 2007; Markley 2011; Farrington, Henson & Crews 2012; Popper 2013; Voros 2017a) that can be applied to multiple contexts, and the theoretical base of the field, including its underlying assumptions, continues to be articulated (Voros 2007; Karlsen, Øverland & Karlsen 2010; Öner 2010; Inayatullah 2012). Its knowledge claim is, broadly, how we use the future in the present to inform thinking, action and decision making (Slaughter 2001; Inayatullah 2002a; Dufva 2015; Kuosa 2017).

Governments at all levels seek to have ‘futures thinking’ included in their research and policy development (Conway & Stewart 2005; Draeger 2018) often in the guise of ‘evidence-based decision making’ required in funding proposals (Schultz 2006b; Habegger 2010), and corporate foresight facilitates the use of foresight approaches in organisations globally (Rohrbeck, Battistella & Huizingh 2015; ARUP 2017; Reed 2017). FSF is taught in universities as full award courses, short courses and individuals subjects (Slaughter 2008a; Hayward, Voros & Morrow 2012; Bengston 2018) – also one of the first steps in the professionalisation of a field. Academic disciplines claim an interest in the future too – for example, a body of sociological literature that is concerned with how people think about the future exists (Selin 2008; Bas 2010; Masini 2010; Adam 2014; Hammershoj 2017; Mandich 2019; Tutton 2019), but it more focused on claiming futures studies as a sociological activity (Bell & Mau 1973; Urry 2016) than exploring possible futures. That said, Bell and Mau’s The Sociology of the Future (1973) is notable for their coverage of images of the future, time, utopias, values, design and methodology – all common FSF topics – from a sociological perspective.

The field as a whole has been analysed at various times – for example, John and Magda McHale’s assessment of futures studies (1976); Homann and Moll’s review of Western futures organisations (Homann & Moll 1993); Helmer’s review of futures research (1999), Slaughter’s State of Play in the Futures Field (Slaughter 2009), Dator’s review of women in the history of futures studies (1992) and Gidley and Ferguson’s (2015) history of women in Australian futures. The FSF literature that has been generated since World War II is substantial – it is sufficient to note here that the focus of that literature includes methods, theory, philosophy and internal critique, as well as the applications of futures approaches to an increasing number of fields.

This brief, selective historical summary cannot do justice to the people who contribute daily to the continuing evolution of FSF which has seen its increasing acceptance as a necessary approach across a wide range of fields. Sardar (2010a, p. 178), makes the critical point that the people who work in, teach and study FSF do, however, need to better understand its history in order to better contribute to it in the present:

As a subject of inquiry with a body of learned literature, recognisable knowledge base, and definable contour of concepts, methodologies, practices and processes, futures studies is now well over 50 years old ... But there seems to be little awareness of this history …we do not even know what to call all those who take the study of alternative futures seriously: futurists, futurologist, prospectivists, foresight practitioners, even horizon scanners have common currency. Moreover, lack of appreciation of this history leads, not so infrequently, to reinventing the field.

Sardar’s comment is an indicator that FSF is a ‘broad church’, one that is home to a wide variety of approaches, beliefs, and practices. As Bell (2009, p. 67) writes: “the diversity of backgrounds of futurists may be a strength for a field that attempts to be holistic and integrative, to deal with … reality among things in order to inform human decision and action.” The field should probably not fear reinvention per se, since improving and updating knowledge and practice will keep it current, but it should perhaps pay attention to two other issues that are mentioned consistently in histories of the field – its terminology and its theory base – to inform that reinvention.

Terminology Challenges

FSF is a field that still grapples with exactly how to describe itself, with early discussions emerging in the 1970s (Amara 1974; McHale & McHale 1976; Boucher 1977). For example, Öner (2010, p. 1024) provides a list of FSF terms, pointing out a lack of consistency in usage that leads him to suggest that “the time has come for Futures Studies and Foresight to focus on the definitions of the concepts used in the field”, a task attempted by van der Helm (2013, p. 24) who considered more work needed to be done on “defining the future”. Sardar (2010, p. 7) points out that:

The terms we use to describe the study of alternative futures is important. Disciplines and discourses do not emerge from a vacuum but have a history and a cultural context; and their names can hide as much as they reveal.

Terms such as futurology, futurism, prospective, and prognostics have been used (Andersson 2018). Calling futures studies a ‘field’ has been questioned (Marien 2002, 2010). Foresight is used in a variety of ways – as a cognitive capacity (Hayward 2005a; Ehresmann 2013; Rhisiart, Miller & Brooks 2015), as practice (Giaoutzi & Sapio 2013) and as method (Krawczyk & Slaughter 2010; Popper 2013; Curry 2015a). ‘Futures research’ is also used in opposition to ‘futures studies’, the former taking a more quantitative or ‘rigorous’ position, while the latter is more qualitative in nature (Slaughter 1982). Inayatullah (1993, p. 236) saw this division as “two modes of knowledge – the technical concerned with predicting the future and the humanist concerned with developing a good society [italics in original].” Miller (2018, p. 55) sees the current discourse as defined by forecasting – “futures generated by closed anticipatory assumptions” – and foresight – futures invented by combining open and closed anticipatory assumptions.” Gidley (2016) calls the division a “bifurcation” of the field into the more constructionist/interpretive futures studies approaches and positivist futures research, which neatly reflects the paradigm wars of the social sciences (Denzin & Lincoln 2005; Given 2017). Poli (2013) notes “while both positions have something to offer … they are both unilateral and (in their own way) dogmatic”, suggesting that futures thinking and practice should seek to remain open, rather than conform to any existing disciplinary definitions (Denzin & Lincoln 2005; Adams & Roulston 2006; Given 2017). Slaughter (1993, p. 292) seems to concur with the open stance when he describes ‘futures movements’ as an addition to future studies and futures research: movements generated by people outside the field who collaboratively create movements “such as the women’s movement, the peace movement and the environmental movement, as well as many NGOs [non-governmental organisations] … the most successful of these movements are among the main agents of change.” This stance also aligns with the third Habermas interest: “the human emancipatory interest; or, simply, the fundamental interest of all persons in freedom, self-constitution and unconstrained conditions of life” (Slaughter 1998, p. 5).

Most recently, ‘anticipation’ has entered the language of FSF, not from within the field, but from a wider movement to establish anticipation as a scientific discipline (Poli 2009, 2017; Aaltonen 2010; Miller, Poli & Rossel 2013; Sharpe & Hodgson 2017; Voros 2017a; Miller 2018). A concept researched in many disciplines from biology to psychology to neuroscience, Miller, Poli and Rossel (2013, p. 3) define anticipation as: “All efforts to ‘know the future’ in the sense of thinking about and ‘using the future’ … the future is incorporated into all phenomena, conscious or unconscious, physical or ideational, as anticipation.” Notably, anticipation is positioned as “a combination of capacities that allow human beings to consider and evaluate the present in the light of the way they imagine the future [and is] a key contributor to the human activity of decision making” (p. 53), which is not unlike the language and definitions used to describe FSF. Miller (2018) has developed a framework for developing ‘futures literacy’ that potentially incorporates FSF as a specialised form of anticipation – but, as an emergent discipline, the impact of anticipation on FSF is not yet clear. An initial reaction suggests that the differences between the two approaches may be fewer than their similarities (Curry 2016). Indeed, preferences for different terminology to define what it is futurists do and how they do it may be usefully considered to be a fundamental characteristic of the field – particularly since language use is usually culturally, temporally and context determined (Elder-Vass 2012; Alvares & Faruqi 2014; Putnam & Banghart 2017), especially in government or corporate sectors, where ‘seriousness’ is mandatory.

In Search of Theory

FSF has been criticised for being a practice in search of a theory (Wildman and Inayatullah 2008; Piirainen & Gonzalez 2015; Ahlqvist & Rhisiart 2015; Chermack 2005; Kurki 2019) that lacks attention to its ontological base (Patomäki 2006; Bergman, Karlsson & Axelsson 2010; Poli 2011; Øverland 2013), and that is dominated by the use of methods, particularly what Slaughter (2009, pp 11-12) terms “linear” and “systemic” methods. Bell (2009, p. 87) notes that “futurists have been prolific in constructing, using and criticizing methods of futures research … [but] have accomplished much less in stating the philosophical bases of their assertions about possible, probable and preferable futures.” Alonso-Concheiro (2015, p. 332) asserts that:

there is a great hole in terms of theory in the middle of our surrounding current practices of futures studies. Our fundamental questions are so problematic that we may even ask ourselves if we are currently in a position to build a truly solid theoretical foundation for the futures field.

Alonso-Concheiro is rightly concerned with the clarity of futures concepts and knowledge development, but his critique of theory development is perhaps extreme since significant work has appeared in the last two decades (Adam & Groves 2007, 2011; Walton 2008; Inayatullah 2010b; Poli 2010, 2015; Miller 2018) that is defining the theoretical base of futures studies – most of which identify a number of common concepts:

  • layers: reality is viewed as layered, consisting of deeper structures that shape what is consider ‘real’ (Inayatullah 2002a; Voros 2005, 2006);
  • foresight: the capacity to think about – to perceive – the future in a systematic way to imagine and engage with alternative futures and to then take action in the present (Voros 2003; Amsteus 2008; Ahvenharju, Minkkinen & Lalot 2018);
  • uncertainty: lack of knowledge about particular topics that, in a dynamic external environment, generate uncertain outcomes over time, often generating ambiguity and anxiety about the future (Michael 1993; van Dorsser et. al. 2018; Schoemaker 2019); and
  • complexity: considered in terms of the complexity of social change generated by intersecting shifts across a range of domains that is understood to some degree, and from unforeseeable change and novelty (North 2013; Miller 2018; Dufva & Dufva 2018; Schoemaker 2019; Tuomi 2019).

The search for theory is reflective of the desire for ‘the future’ to be recognised as a valid area of study and work in the present (Voros 2007) and, in the case of current work on anticipation, to gain explicit recognition as a scientific discipline (Miller 2018). The theory base for FSF is being constructed, and the imperative to give that base some consistency across FSF research and practice may actually be a more urgent concern than simply trying to define a consistent terminology. Indeed, the literature reviewed suggests that this theory base should maintain the field’s generally accepted ‘open’ stance while also delineating clearly what it adds to existing research theory and practice beyond futures studies (Masini 1997; Lo Presti 2010).

References

Aaltonen, M. (2010). Robustness: anticipatory and adaptive human systems. Emergent Publications.

Abbott, A. (1991). The order of professionalisation. Work and Occupations, 18(4), 355–384.

Adam, B. (2014). Towards a new sociology of the future. Cardiff University. http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.198.2175&rep=rep1&type=pdf

Adam, B., & Groves, C. (2007). Future matters: Action, knowledge, ethics. Brill.

Adam, B., & Groves, C. (2011). Futures tended: Care and future-oriented responsibility. Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society, 31(1), 17–27. https://doi.org/10.1177/0270467610391237

Adams, E., & Roulston, K. (2006). The state of qualitative inquiry: A contested science. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 19(6), 673–684. https://doi.org/10.1080/09518390600975644

Ahlqvist, T., & Rhisiart, M. (2015). Emerging pathways for critical futures research: Changing contexts and impacts of social theory. Futures, 71, 91–104. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2015.07.012

Ahvenharju, S., Minkkinen, M., & Lalot, F. (2018). The five dimensions of futures consciousness. Futures, 104, 1–13. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2018.06.010

Alonso-Concheiro, A. (2015). Thinking futures. World Futures Review, 7(4), 332–341. https://doi.org/10.1177/1946756716628882

Alvares, C., & Faruqi, S. S. (Eds.). (2014). Decolonising the university: The emerging quest for non-eurocentric paradigms (S. SaleemFaruqi, trans.). Penerbit Universiti Sains Malaysia.

Amara, R. (1974). The futures field: Functions, forms, and critical issues. Futures, 6(4), 289–301. https://doi.org/10.1016/0016-3287(74)90072-X

Amer, M., Daim, T. U., & Jetter, A. (2013). A review of scenario planning. Futures, 46, 23–40. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2012.10.003

Amsteus, M. (2008). Managerial foresight: Concept and measurement. Foresight, 10(1), 53–66. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636680810856026

Andersson, Janna. (2007). Futures studies timeline. https://www.elon.edu/u/imagining/wp-content/uploads/sites/964/2019/07/Futures-Studies-Timeline.pdf

Andersson, Jenny. (2018). The future of the world: Futurology, futurists, and the struggle for the post Cold War imagination. Oxford University Press.

ARUP. (2017). An introduction to corporate foresight. ARUP Foresight.

Bas, E. (2010). The sociology of the 21st century; Or how to be ready for facing the future. International Review of Sociology, 9(3), 287–293. https://doi.org/10.1080/03906701.1999.9971316

Bell, W. (2001). Futures studies comes of age: twenty-five years after “The Limits to Growth.” Futures, 33, 63–76.

Bell, W. (2002). A community of futurists and the state of the futures field. Futures, 34(3–4), 235–247. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0016-3287(01)00041-6

Bell, W. (2009). Foundations of futures studies: History, purposes, and knowledge (Volume 1: Human science for a new era) (Vol. 1). Transaction Publishers. https://doi.org/FUT BELL v.1

Bell, W., & Mau, J. A. (1973). The sociology of the future: Theory, cases and annotated bibliography (J. A. Mau (Trans.); 2nd ed.). Russell Sage Foundation.

Bengston, D. N. (2018). Principles for thinking about the future and foresight education. World Futures Review, 10(3), 193–202. https://doi.org/10.1177/1946756718777252

Bergman, A., Karlsson, J. C., & Axelsson, J. (2010). Truth claims and explanatory claims: An ontological typology of futures studies. Futures, 42(8), 857–865. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2010.02.003

Bishop, P., Hines, A., & Collins, T. (2007). The current state of scenario development: An overview of techniques. Foresight, 9(1), 5–25.

Boucher, W. I. (1977). The study of the future: An agenda for research. National Science Foundation.

Boulding, E. (1979). Learning to learn: North’s response to the new international economic order. Alternatives: Global, Local, Political, 4(4), 429–454. https://doi.org/10.1177/030437547900400401

Bowman, G., MacKay, R. B., Masrani, S., & McKiernan, P. (2013). Storytelling and the scenario process: Understanding success and failure. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 80(4), 735–748. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2012.04.009

Buehring, J. H., & Liedtka, J. (2018). Embracing systematic futures thinking at the intersection of strategic planning, foresight and design. Journal of Innovaton Management, 6(3), 134–152. https://doi.org/10.24840/2183-0606_006.003_0006

Cairns, G., Wright, G., Fairbrother, P., & Phillips, R. (2017). ‘Branching scenarios’ seeking articulated action for regional regeneration – A case study of limited success. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 124, 189–202. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2017.01.014

Candy, S. (2015). The thing from the future. In A. Curry (Ed.), Compass: Methods Anthology (pp. 18–21). Association for Professional Futurists.

Candy, S., & Dunagan, J. (2007). FoundFutures. Hawaii Research Centre for Futures Studies. https://www.scribd.com/document/134636809/FoundFutures

Candy, S., Dunagan, J. F., Candy, S., & Dunagan, J. (2016). The experiential turn. December, 26–28.

Carson, R. (1962). Silent spring. Houghton Mifflin.

Chermack, T. J. (2004). A theoretical model of scenario planning. Human Resource Development Review, 3(4), 301–325. https://doi.org/10.1177/1534484304270637

Chermack, T. J. (2005). Studying scenario planning: Theory, research suggestions, and hypotheses. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 72(1), 59–73. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2003.11.003

Conway, M. (2003). Scenarios and university planning. Australasian Journal of Institutional Research, 12(2), 1–6. http://www.aair.org.au/articles/volume-12-no-2/12-2-scenarios-and-university-planning

Conway, M., & Stewart, C. (2005). Creating and sustaining foresight in Australia: A review of government foresight (Vol. 8, Issue Generic). Australian Foresight Institute.

Cournand, A., & Levy, M. (Eds.). (1973). Shaping the future: Gaston Berger and the concept of Prospective. Gordon and Breach Science Publishers.

Cuhls, K., & Daheim, C. (2017). Introduction to the special issue on “Experiencing Futures.” Futures, 86, 92–93. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2016.09.004

Curry, A. (Ed.). (2015). Methods Anthology. Association of Professional Futurists. https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B2o-QyVNwL3zbnJrRk1kZ1JTbG8/view

Curry, A. (2016, January). The anticipation question. Compass, 1, 2–8.

Curry, A. (2020). A critical history of scenarios. In Social Futures Handbook ([in press]). Institute for Social Futures, Lancaster University.

Dator, J. (1992). Women in futures studies and women’s visions of the future - One man’s tentative view. World Futures Studies Federation. https://wfsf.org/resources/leala-pedagogical-resources/articles-used-by-futures-teachers/114-women-in-futures-studies-jim-dator-1992

Dator, J. (1995). What futures studies is, and is not. Hawaii Research Center for Futures Studies. http://futures.hawaii.edu/publications/futures-studies/WhatFSis1995.pdf

Dator, J. (1998). The future lies behind! Thirty years of teaching future studies. The American Behavioral Scientist, 42(3), 298–319.

de Jouvenel, B. (2012). The art of conjecture (Ni. Lary (Trans.)). Basic Books Inc.

de Jouvenel, H. (2004). Invitation à la prospective [Translated by Helen Fish]. Futuribles.

Denzin, N. K., & Lincoln, Y. S. (2005). Introduction. In The SAGE handbook of qualitative research (3rd ed.). SAGE Publications.

Derbyshire, J. (2019). Use of scenario planning as a theory-driven evaluation tool. Futures & Foresight Science, 1(1), 1–13. https://doi.org/10.1002/ffo2.1

Draeger, D. (2018, May). An overview of futures and foresight in government agencies around the world. Ross Dawson. https://rossdawson.com/blog/overview-futures-foresight-government-agencies-around-world/

Dufva, M. (2015). Knowledge creation in foresight: a practice- and systems-oriented view (Issue 222) [Aalto University, Espoo, Finland]. https://aaltodoc.aalto.fi/bitstream/handle/123456789/19322/isbn9789526066080.pdf;sequence=1

Dufva, T., & Dufva, M. (2018). Grasping the future of the digital society. Futures, 107, 17–28. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2018.11.001

Ehresmann, A. C. (2013). A theoretical frame for future studies. On the Horizon, 21(1), 46–53. https://doi.org/10.1108/10748121311297067

Elder-Vass, D. (2012). The reality of social construction. Cambridge University Press.

Farrington, T., Henson, K., & Crews, C. (2012). Research foresights: The use of strategic foresight methods for ideation and portfolio management. Research-Technology Management, 55(2), 26–33. https://doi.org/10.5437/08956308X5502023

Farrow, E. (2019). To augment human’s artificial intelligence evolution through Causal Layered Analysis. Futures, 108, 61–71. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2019.02.022

Flechtheim, O. K. (1945). Teaching the future. The Journal of Higher Education, 16(9), 460–465.

Galtung, J. J. (1996). Probing the dark to make for better futures. Futures, 28(6–7), 566–569.

Giaoutzi, M., & Sapio, B. (2013). Recent developments in foresight methodologies (M. Giaoutzi & B. Sapio (Eds.); Vol. 28). Springer US. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-5215-7

Gidley, J. M. (2016). Understanding the breadth of futures studies through a dialogue with climate change. World Futures Review, 8(1), 24–38. https://doi.org/10.1177/1946756715627369

Gidley, J. M., & Ferguson, A. (2015). Women shaping Australian futures. Foresight International. http://foresightinternational.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Gidley_Ferguson_Women_Shaping_Aust_Futs_Final_2015.pdf

Given, L. M. (2017). It’s a new year…So let’s stop the paradigm wars. International Journal of Qualitative Methods, 16(1–2). https://doi.org/10.1177/1609406917692647

Godet, M. (2000). The Art of Scenarios and Strategic Planning. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 65(1), 3–22. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0040-1625(99)00120-1

Godhe, B. M., & Goode, L. (2018). Critical future studies – A thematic introduction. Culture Unbound: Journal of Current Cultural Research, 10(2), 151–162. http://www.cultureunbound.ep.liu.se

Habegger, B. (2010). Strategic foresight in public policy: Reviewing the experiences of the UK, Singapore, and the Netherlands. Futures, 42(1), 49–58. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2009.08.002

Hammershoj, L. G. (2017). Diagnosis of the times. In R. Poli (Ed.), Handbook of Anticipation (pp. 1–20). Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-31737-3_64-1

Hayward, P. (2005). From individual to social foresight [PhD Thesis] [Swinburne University of Technology]. https://researchbank.swinburne.edu.au/file/5dddcd85-62db-4d86-810f-e43cd97e83b0/1/Peter C Hayward Thesis.pdf

Hayward, P. (2008). Pathways to integral perspectives. Futures, 40(2), 109–119. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2007.11.008

Hayward, P., Voros, J., & Morrow, R. (2012). Foresight education in Australia – Time for a hybrid model? Futures, 44(2), 181–188.

Helmer, O. (1972). On the future state of the union. Institute for the Future.

Helmer, O. (1975). An agenda for futures research. Futures, 7(1), 3–14. https://doi.org/10.1016/0016-3287(75)90029-4

Helmer, O. (1999). The past and future of futures research. Technological Forecasting & Social Change, 62(1–2), 33–35. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0040-1625(99)00010-4

Hines, A., & Zindato, D. (2016). Designing foresight and foresighting design. World Futures Review, 8(4), 180–192. https://doi.org/10.1177/1946756716672477

Homann, R., & Moll, P. H. (1993). An overview of western futures organizations. Futures, 25(3), 339–347. https://doi.org/10.1016/0016-3287(93)90141-F

Inayatullah, S. (2002). Layered methodology: meanings, epistemes and the politics of knowledge. Futures, 34(6), 479.

Inayatullah, Sohail. (1990). Deconstructing and reconstructing the future: Predictive, cultural and critical epistemologies. Futures, 22(2), 115. https://doi.org/10.1016/0016-3287(90)90077-U

Inayatullah, Sohail. (1993). From “who am I?” to “when am I?”. Framing the shape and time of the future. Futures, 25(3), 235–253. https://doi.org/10.1016/0016-3287(93)90135-G

Inayatullah, Sohail. (2006). Anticipatory action learning: Theory and practice. Futures, 38(6), 656–666. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2005.10.003

Inayatullah, Sohail. (2010). Theory and practice in transformation: The disowned futures of Integral extension. Futures, 42(2), 103–109. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2009.09.002

Inayatullah, Sohail. (2012). Futures studies: Theories and methods. In There’s a future: Visions for a better world (pp. 37–65). BBVA Open Mind.

Jemala, M. (2010). Evolution of foresight in the global historical context. Foresight, 12(4), 65–81. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636681011063004

Johansson, K., Lassbo, G., & Nehls, E. (Eds.). (2013). Inside the new university: Pre-requisites for a contemporary knowledge production. Bentham Science Publishers.

Kahane, A. (2012). Transformative scenario planning: Changing the future by exploring alternatives. Strategy & Leadership, 40(5), 19–23. https://doi.org/10.1108/10878571211257140

Karlsen, J. E., Øverland, E. F., & Karlsen, H. (2010). Sociological contributions to futures’ theory building. Foresight, 12(3), 59–72. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636681011049884

Keenan, M. (2007). Combining foresight methods for impact. NISTEP 3rd International Conference on Foresight. https://www.nistep.go.jp/IC/ic071119/pdf/3-3_Keenan.pdf

Kelliher, A., & Byrne, D. (2015). Design futures in action: Documenting experiential futures for participatory audiences. Futures, 70, 36–47. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2014.12.004

Krawczyk, E., & Slaughter, R. A. (2010). New generations of futures methods. Futures, 42, 75–82. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2009.08.011

Kuosa, T. (2009). Towards the dynamic paradigm of futures research: How to grasp a complex futures problem with mulitple phases and multiple methods [PhD Thesis] [Turku School of Economics]. http://www.utupub.fi/bitstream/handle/10024/113669/Ae8_2009.pdf?sequence=1

Kuosa, T. (2011). Evolution of futures studies. Futures, 43(3), 327–336. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2010.04.001

Kuosa, T. (2017). Which way do you think the future gets formed? Future Proof. http://www.futuresplatform.com/blog/which-way-do-you-think-future-gets-formed

Kurki, S. (2019). The long-waves and the evolution of futures practice and theory. World Futures Review, 11(2), 122–140. https://doi.org/10.1177/1946756718796487

Lindgren, M., & Bandhold, H. (2009). Scenario planning: The link between future and strategy (2nd ed.). Palgrave MacMillan.

Linstone, H., & Simmonds, W. C. (Eds.). (1977). Futures research: new directions. Addison-Wesley Pub. Co.

Lo Presti, A. (2010). The logical exchange between futures studies and social sciences. International Review of Sociology, 9(3), 311–320. https://doi.org/10.1080/03906701.1999.9971318

Lüdeke, M. K. B. (2013). Bridging qualitative and quantitative methods in foresight. In M. Giaoutzi & B. Sapio (Eds.), Recent Developments in Foresight Methodologies (pp. 53–65). Springer Publishers. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-5215-7_4

Mandich, G. (2019). Why sociology needs anticipation? In R. Poli (Ed.), Handbook of Anticipation. Springer Publishing.

Marien, M. (2002). Futures studies in the 21st century: A reality-based view. Futures, 34(3–4), 261–281. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0016-3287(01)00043-X

Marien, M. (2010). Futures-thinking and identity: Why “futures studies” is not a field, discipline, or discourse: a response to Ziauddin Sardar’s ‘the namesake.’ Futures, 42(3), 190–194. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2009.11.003

Markley, O. (2011). Research and action toward the upside of down. Journal of Futures Studies, 15(3), 145–174.

Masini, Eleonor. (1997). The relationship between futures studies and social sciences from the 60s to the present. Society and Economy in Central and Eastern Europe, 19(4), 121–142. https://www.jstor.org/stable/41468345?read-now=1

Masini, Eleonora. (1998). Futures studies from the experience of a sociologist who tries to be a futurist. American Behavioral Scientist, 42(3), 340–346. https://doi.org/10.1177/0002764298042003005

Masini, Eleonora. (2006). Rethinking futures studies. Futures, 38(10), 1158–1168.

Masini, Eleonora. (2010). Futures studies and sociology: A debate, a critical approach and a hope. International Review of Sociology, 9(3), 325–332. https://doi.org/10.1080/03906701.1999.9971320

McGonigal, J. (2011). Reality is broken: Why games may change the world. Penguin Press.

McHale, J. (1969). The future of the future. George Braziller Inc.

McHale, J. (1973). The changing pattern of futures research in the USA. Futures, 5(3), 257–271. https://doi.org/10.1016/0016-3287(73)90064-5

McHale, J., & McHale, M. C. (1976). An assessment of futures studies worldwide. Futures, 8(2), 135–145. https://doi.org/10.1016/0016-3287(76)90063-X

McHale, M. C. (1993). Understanding change. Futures, 25(3), 355–356.

Meadows, D., Meadows, D. L., Randers, J., & Behren III, W. W. (1972). The limits to growth. Universal Books.

Miller, R. (Ed.). (2018). Transforming the future: Anticipation in the 21st century. Routledge.

Miller, R., Poli, R., & Rossel, P. (2013). The discipline of anticipation: Exploring key issues (No. 1; Issue May). UNESCO/Rockerfeller Foundation.

Millett, S. M. (2017). Four decades of business scenarios: what can experience teach? Strategy and Leadership, 41(1), 29–33. https://doi.org/10.1108/10878571311290052

Milojević, I. (2002). A selective history of futures thinking. Metafuture. http://www.metafuture.org/library/A-selective-history-of-futurest-thinking-Milojevic.pdf

Molitor, G. T. T. (2009). Scenarios: worth the effort? Journal of Futures Studies, 13(3), 81–92.

Moll, P. (1996). The thirst for certainty: Futures studies in Europe and the United States. In Knowledge Base of Futures Studies (Vol. 1). Foresight International.

Nandy, A. (1996). Bearing witness to the future. Futures, 28(6), 636–639. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315146508

Nikolova, B. (2014). The rise and promise of participatory foresight. European Journal of Futures Research, 2(1), 1–9. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40309-013-0033-2

North, M. (2013). Novelty: A history of the new. University of Chicago Press.

Öner, M. A. (2010). On theory building in foresight and futures studies: A discussion note. Futures, 42(9), 1019–1030. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2010.08.026

Oteros-Rozas, E., Martín-López, B., Daw, T. M., Bohensky, E. L., Butler, J. R. A., Hill, R., Martin-Ortega, J., Quinlan, A., Ravera, F., Ruiz-Mallén, I., Thyresson, M., Mistry, J., Palomo, I., Peterson, G. D., Plieninger, T., Waylen, K. A., Beach, D. M., Bohnet, I. C., Hamann, M., … Vilardy, S. P. (2015). Participatory scenario planning in place-based social-ecological research: insights and experiences from 23 case studies. Ecology and Society: A Journal of Integrative Science for Resilience and Sustainability. https://doi.org/10.5751/{ES}-07985-200432

Øverland, E. F. (2013). Universal perspectivism: Transcending “facta” and “futura” through foresight theory building. On the Horizon, 21(1), 39–45. https://doi.org/10.1108/10748121311297058

Patomäki, H. (2006). Realist ontology for futures studies. Journal of Critical Realism, 5(1), 1–31. https://doi.org/10.1558/jocr.v5i1.1

Piirainen, K. A., & Gonzalez, R. A. (2015). Theory of and within foresight - “What does a theory of foresight even mean?” Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 96, 191–201. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2015.03.003

Poli, R. (2009). The complexity of anticipation. Balkan Journal of Philosophy, 1(1), 19–29.

Poli, R. (2010). The many aspects of anticipation. Foresight, 12(3), 7–17. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636681011049839

Poli, R. (2011). Steps toward an explicit ontology of the future. Journal of Futures Studies, 16(1), 67–78.

Poli, R. (2013). Overcoming divides. On the Horizon, 21(3), 3–14. https://doi.org/10.1108/10748121311297021

Poli, R. (2015). Social foresight. On the Horizon, 23(2), 85–99. https://doi.org/10.1108/{OTH}-01-2015-0003

Poli, R. (2017). Introducing anticipation. In R. Poli (Ed.), Handbook of Anticipation: Theoretical and Applied Aspects of the Use of the Future in Decision Making (pp. 1–14). Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-31737-3_1-1

Popper, R. (2013). Foresight methodology. In L. Georghiou, J. Cassingena, M. Keenan, I. Miles, & R. Popper (Eds.), The Handbook of Technology Foresight (pp. 44–48). Edward Elgar.

Putnam, L. L., & Banghart, S. (2017). Interpretive approaches. In C. R. Scott, J. R. Barker, T. Kuhn, J. Keyton, P. K. Turner, & L. K. Lewis (Eds.), The International Encyclopedia of Organizational Communication (pp. 1–17). John Wiley & Sons, Inc. https://doi.org/10.1002/9781118955567.wbieoc118

Reed, D. (2017). Pinball, War Games, and Universities - Reed’s Ruminations: A Blog by Dan Reed. Reed’s Ruminations: A Blog by Dan Reed. http://www.hpcdan.org/reeds_ruminations/2017/08/pinball-war-games-and-universities.html

Rhisiart, M. (2013). Foresight and “grand challenges” within research and innovation policies. Foresight, 15(1), 29–39. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636681311310123

Rhisiart, M., Miller, R., & Brooks, S. (2015). Learning to use the future: Developing foresight capabilities through scenario processes. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 101(1), 124–133. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2014.10.015

Rohrbeck, R., Battistella, C., & Huizingh, E. (2015). Corporate foresight: An emerging field with a rich tradition. Technological Forecasting & Social Change, 101(12), 1–9. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2015.11.002

Sardar, Z. (1993). Colonizing the future: the “other” dimension of futures studies. Futures, 25(2), 179–187. https://doi.org/10.1016/0016-3287(93)90163-N

Sardar, Z. (1999). Rescuing all our futures: the future of futures studies. Praeger.

Sardar, Z. (2010). The Namesake: Futures; futures studies; futurology; futuristic; foresight - What’s in a name? Futures, 42(3), 177–184. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2009.11.001

Schoemaker, P. J. H. (2019). Attention and foresight in organizations. Futures & Foresight Science, 1(1), 1–12. https://doi.org/10.1002/ffo2.5

Schultz, Wendy L. (2016). A brief history of futures. In World Future Review (Vol. 7, Issue 4, pp. 324–331). https://doi.org/10.1177/1946756715627646

Schultz, Wendy Lynn. (2012). The history of futures. In A. Curry (Ed.), The Future of Futures (pp. 3–7). Association of Professional Futurists.

Seefried, E. (2014). Steering the future. The emergence of Western futures research and its production of expertise, 1950s to early 1970s. European Journal of Futures Research, 2(1), 29. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40309-013-0029-y

Selin, C. (2008). The sociology of the future: Tracing stories of technology and time. Sociology Compass, 2(6), 1878–1895. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-9020.2008.00147.x

Selin, C., Kimbell, L., Ramirez, R., & Bhatti, Y. (2015). Scenarios and design: Scoping the dialogue space. Futures, 74, 4–17. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2015.06.002

Sharpe, B., & Hodgson, A. (2017). Anticipation in three horizons. In R. Poli (Ed.), Handbook of Anticipation (pp. 1–18). Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-31737-3_82-1

Slaughter, R.A. (1993). Futures concepts. Futures, 25(3), 289–314. https://doi.org/10.1016/0016-3287(93)90138-J

Slaughter, R.A. (1995). Knowledge base of futures studies. Foresight International. https://foresightinternational.com.au/kbfs/

Slaughter, R.A. (2008a). Futures education: Catalyst for our times. Journal of Futures Studies, 12(3), 15–30.

Slaughter, R.A. (2008b). Integral futures methodologies. Futures, 40(2), 103–108.

Slaughter, R.A. (2009). The state of play in the futures field: A metascanning overview. Foresight, 11(5), 6–20. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636680910994932

Slaughter, Richard A. (1999a). A new framework for environmental scanning. Foresight, 1(5), 441–451.

Slaughter, Richard A. (1999b). Futures for the third millennium. Prospect Media.

Slaughter, Richard A. (2001). Knowledge creation, futures methodologies and the integral agenda. Foresight, 3(5), 407–418. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636680110697129

Slaughter, Richard A. (2016). Readings in Integral Futures. Foresight International. http://foresightinternational.com.au/if-sub-page-1/

Slaughter, Richard A. (1982). Critical futures study and curriculum renewal: Implications for secondary curricula in England and Wales. University of Lancaster.

Slaughter, Richard A. (1998). Futures studies as an intellectual and applied discipline. American Behavioral Scientist, 42(3), 372–385. https://doi.org/10.1177/0002764298042003008

Slaughter, Richard A. (2002). Foresight from forecasting and scenarios to social construction: changing methodological paradigms in futures studies. Foresight, 4(3), 26–31.

Son, H. (2015). The history of Western futures studies: An exploration of the intellectual traditions and three-phase periodization. Futures, 66, 120–137. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2014.12.013

Stein, J., Watson, J., & Candy, S. (2015). Futureschool (card game). Situation Lab.

Stevenson, T. (2002). Anticipatory action learning: conversations about the future. Futures, 34(5), 417–425. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0016-3287(01)00068-4

Tibbs, H. (1999). Making the future visible: Psychology, scenarios , and strategy. Australian Public Service Futures Group, September 1999, 1–6.

Tuomi, I. (2019). Chronotopes of foresight: Models of time‐space in probabilistic, possibilistic and constructivist futures. Futures & Foresight Science, 1(2), 1–15. https://doi.org/10.1002/ffo2.11

Tutton, R. (2019, March). Imagining futures: From sociology of the future to future fictions. The Sociological Review. https://www.thesociologicalreview.com/imagining-futures-from-sociology-of-the-future-to-future-fictions/

Urry, J. (2016). What is the future? Polity Books.

van der Helm, R. (2007). Ten insolvable dilemmas of participation and why foresight has to deal with them. Foresight, 9(3), 3–17. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636680710754138

Voros, J. (2003). A generic foresight process framework. Foresight, 5(3), 10–21. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636680310698379

Voros, J. (2005). A generalised “layered methodology” framework. Foresight, 7(2), 28–40. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636680510700094

Voros, J. (2006). Introducing a classification framework for prospective methods. Foresight, 8(2), 43–56. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636680610656174

Voros, J. (2007). On the philosophical foundations of futures studies. In P. A. Duin & P. van der Duin (Eds.), Knowing tomorrow?: How science deals with the future (pp. 69–90). Eburon Academic Publishers.

Voros, J. (2008). Integral Futures: An approach to futures inquiry. Futures, 40(2), 190–201. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2007.11.010

Voros, J. (2017). Big history and anticipation. In R. Poli (Ed.), Handbook of Anticipation (pp. 1–40). Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-31737-3_95-1

Walton, J. S. (2008). Scanning beyond the horizon: Exploring the ontological and epistemological basis for scenario planning. Advances in Developing Human Resources, 10(2), 147–165. https://doi.org/10.1177/1523422307304101

Wells, H. G. (1932). Wanted - Professors of foresight! Studying the Future. http://richardslaughter.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Wells_Wanted_Professors_of_Foresight.pdf

Yeoman, I., & Curry, A. (2019). Bridging theory and practice. World Futures Review, 11(2), 103–107. https://doi.org/10.1177/1946756718820582