Foresight helps when businesses need to look years ahead into the future. The term “foresight” came into use in the late 80s, not only to predict the development of various scientific and technological innovations but also to use this knowledge to make managerial decisions in the long term .
The methodology combines various tools to create a common vision of the future that will be shared by all stakeholders . A distinctive feature of the methodology is that it is not just about predicting the future, but about deep understanding and conscious formation of the future. Foresight uses patterns of the past, current reality, and future trends, in order to understand how the future can be managed.
What is a foresight study? This is usually a project that uses various methods to assess and evaluate the future. The participants of such a project – a group of stakeholders – analyze possible options, discuss them, and together develop the most preferable scenario for the future. In foresight participants do not predict the future, but develop a system of measures that will allow them to achieve the desired future result.
The foresight methodology has its origins in the field of military technologies. It was first used by US military research centers in the 1950s . RAND Corporation made an attempt to assess the prospects of various technologies in terms of their application in the defense sector. To do this, RAND used the Delphi expert assessment method, which has since become one of the main foresight methods [2, 3].
Foresight is actively used not only in the corporate world to develop strategies for large enterprises. It is also used to plan the development of individual cities, regions, and even countries. We would like to share a few cases of successfully implemented foresight tools to show how this methodology works.