by | Tan Shu Ying, PhD, firstname.lastname@example.org
For eons, humankind have been attempting to predict the future. Our obsession has resulted in over 250 methods of divination ranging from observing animal behaviour to cosmic events, from using leaves to cards, sacrificing animals and conjuring spirits. One would think we would be able to predict the future from anything. Even with the advancements in technology and increase in education levels, humankind’s fascination with knowing what will happen before it happens has never wavered. In fact, it has increased and has become a necessity in all aspects of our lives.
Today, predicting the future is no longer solely associated with shamanism. Instead, it is a methodological approach of preparing ahead to ensure higher rates of success and survivability. Futures thinking is about preparing ourselves for all future possibilities. Hence, when one of the possibilities comes knocking, we are ready to grab the opportunity. As they say, opportunity only comes to those who are prepared. Often, we see how true this is as organisations, businesses and governments hire planners, strategists, visionaries and futurists to help them prepare for what may arise in a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world.
How we predict the future to unfurl, opportunities that may arise and preparation that we undertake are often based on known trends that are conventionally a continuation of the information we have today. Here we present a glimpse of how today’s trends will impact the future individual, family and community in five areas; basic needs, quality of life, economic stability, governance and societal values.
By presenting a glimpse of how today’s trends will have future impacts on our basic needs, quality of life, economic stability, governance and societal values, we are able to open our minds to different possibilities. In scenario planning and foresight, we often emphasise that the future that we foresee today is not singular but a possibility of many futures. Hence, these are just some possibilities to start your preparation for the future today.