Webinar: Exploring Alternative Futures15. Dec 2021
In this webinar, two leading foresight specialists, Mikko Dufva from Sitra, and our own Sara Gry Striegler give a unique insight into future work and how it can drive impact and mission-oriented innovation. The journey towards change is multifaceted and requires a proactive response from everyone
Setting the direction to strive for
The challenges of today’s society are not as easy to overcome as sending a man to the moon. Nowadays, we may all agree that we need to reduce CO2 emissions, but there are different ways to do it. The path may depend on technological advances, unforeseen natural disasters, new actors joining the ecosystem, and others leaving it. Every single event can affect the direction.
As Mikko and Sara agree, the direction of the mission is not a given – it must be created and constantly revisited. This way, the direction of the mission is not a single endpoint, but an intent: a vision of the future we are striving for. “We need a multidimensional and empathic perspective of the future if we are to act proactively in the present – whether as citizens, policymakers, researchers, entrepreneurs, or managers,” Sara says.
Imagining a different future
Setting the direction is about waking up our shared imagination of how the future could be: creating preferred situations that we can relate to and strive for. As a result, we can shift from a problem-oriented focus to an opportunity-oriented focus when launching and driving missions.
Understanding the problem and engaging the actors is important, but so is envisioning the future. Through involvement of the ecosystem actors, the task is to paint a cohesive picture of the preferred future. The desired situation might be in the form of a story, an image, or a film, and this is where future design and scenarios can help clarify and frame the work. It gives us the chance to relate, engage, understand and bring the future alive – and create that empathy for future citizens.
Mikko Dufva, leading Foresight Specialist at the Finnish innovation fund SITRA, has extensive experience in foresight studies and the creation of future knowledge and systemic foresight. Sara Gry Striegler, Program Director at the Danish Design Center, is especially acknowledged for her work and futuristic mindset.
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