An Introduction to Futures Thinking

Gain valuable perspectives into thinking about the future in a fast changing world
An Introduction to Futures Thinking
File Size :
2.72 GB
Total length :
2h 35m


Dr. Thomas Carroll


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An Introduction to Futures Thinking

What you’ll learn

The course will introduce the key aspects of this exciting and fascinating topic of Futures Thinking.
The course will help you to develop your own Futures thinking mindset and become more futures literate.
The course aims to support reflection upon our orientations towards the future as individuals, as organisations, as students or as educators.
The course will help you get better at leading positive change and thinking outside the box.
The course will help you build your creativity and to be ready for an increasingly fast changing world.
The course will help you and your business/organisation to adapt to an uncertain world, build resilience and agility to survive and thrive.
Increase participants’ ability to imagine different futures and act towards the realisation of a preferred future.
Build an understanding of how to engage in future-oriented thinking.
Challenge your conceptions about the future and imagined preferred futures.
Help you to understand the link between future-oriented thinking and action in the present.
You will recognise your own agency as a change-maker.
You will become aware of your own and other people’s assumptions about the future.

An Introduction to Futures Thinking


There are no requirements – simply a desire to understand, prepare for and take ownership of the future!
The course is suitable for beginners who want an introduction to thinking about the future.
The course is a first step for participants who wish to familiarise themselves with future-oriented thinking and foresight.


“The only certainty for the future is change.  Hence, it is very risky to assume that everything will stay the same as today.”– Kees van der HeijdenWe live in a complex and fast-moving world. The pace of change is itself accelerating!  These are turbulent times and both the future and the present feel more uncertain and nebulous than before. The major changes of our time are familiar to everyone: climate change, biodiversity loss, rapidly advancing technology, mass migrations, ageing populations, the worst war in Europe since 1945, a food and energy crisis and challenges associated with democracy. It’s no wonder that many people feel like their faith in the future is being tested!Futures thinking for personal, organizational, and societal resilience and success is essential. Imagining a better future is perhaps more important right now than it has ever been in human history. Futures thinking is used across all sectors, industries and functions – government, corporate, non-profit and startups. Futures thinking is used in strategy, innovation, change management and personal development. We use tools like environmental scanning and scenario planning.The foresight gained from Futures Thinking allows us to thrive in a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) environment.Organizations that intentionally develop a futures culture are primed for market-leading innovation, successful opportunity development, and revenue-generating futures intelligence.The course seeks to encourage and inspire course participants to be bolder in the way they think about the future; to push the boundaries of current constraints and knowledge of how things can be done.Being a futurist is not for a select few – it’s for all of us! These skills of being a futurist are teachable and learnable. The more you think like a futurist, the better you can create the future you want.While there will always be great uncertainty about the future, there is no uncertainty that it will unfold, so who is responsible for the future? I think we all are. So let’s get started. We all have a stake and interest in the future!”My interest is in the future because I am going to spend the rest of my life there.”Charles KetteringWelcome to the course!


Section 1: Introduction to Futures thinking

Lecture 1 Introduction to the course

Lecture 2 What is Futures Thinking?

Lecture 3 Who might use futures thinking?

Lecture 4 Benefits of futures thinking

Lecture 5 The challenges of futures thinking

Lecture 6 Introduce yourself to other course participants

Lecture 7 Practice – Time machine to 10 years ago

Lecture 8 Practice – Time machine to 10 years into the future

Lecture 9 Reflection on the last two assignments

Lecture 10 Summary of section 1

Section 2: Implementing Futures Thinking

Lecture 11 Introduction to section 2

Lecture 12 The mindset and skills of an effective futurist

Lecture 13 Practice – Get into a Futurists mindset

Lecture 14 Environmental or Horizon scanning

Lecture 15 Practice scanning STEEP changes

Lecture 16 Weak signals of the future

Lecture 17 Practice – Choose a signal of your own

Lecture 18 Assumptions about the future

Lecture 19 Practice – Reversing Assumptions Technique

Lecture 20 The futures cone & alternate futures

Lecture 21 Creating alternative futures with scenarios

Lecture 22 Practice – Create your own scenario

Lecture 23 Visioning your preferred future and backcasting

Lecture 24 Practice – Imagine your preferred future and first steps

Lecture 25 Story telling and prototyping artifacts from the future

Lecture 26 Practice – Develop a story or prototype from 10 years time

Lecture 27 Futures Thinking is Collaborative

Lecture 28 Practice – The Futures Wheel

Lecture 29 Summary of section 2

Section 3: Conclusions and resources for further leaning

Lecture 30 Introduction to section 3

Lecture 31 Practice – Time Machine to 2036

Lecture 32 Sources of further information on Futures Thinking

Lecture 33 Congratulations

Lecture 34 Bonus lecture

The course is for anyone who wants to become better at thinking about the future.,Those who want to define their preferred future scenario and take steps today to make it happen.,Beginner futurists who want an introduction to this endlessly fascinating topic.,Both nonprofits and for-profit organisations who seek to use Futures Thinking to help improve strategic business decision-making.,Small business owners who what to catch potential trends early and capitalise on them.,Leaders who want to get a new perspective on the world and not get blind sided by the competition.,Those who want to build a culture of experimentation, thus also increasing organisational long-term resilience.,Those who wish to foster a culture of longer-term thinking within their organisation.,Educators who want to better equip their students to engage with the future.,Government policy makers who want to make policy which is robust and responds to long-term change.,Those who want to make the future a greater priority and embed long-term thinking into their everyday lives.

Course Information:

Udemy | English | 2h 35m | 2.72 GB
Created by: Dr. Thomas Carroll

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