Repository: Deliberating Foresight Knowledge for Policy and Foresight Knowledge Assessment

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Project Visions and Visioning
File:Vision.jpg This article is developed within the scope of the Project Visions and Visioning, an effort to enhance Foresight learning through collaborative work.

Deliberating Foresight Knowledge for Policy and Foresight Knowledge Assessment is a working paper authored by René von Schomberg, Ângela Guimarães Pereira and Silvio Funtowicz, and published by the European Commission, Directorate General for Research in November 2005. This report was included in the mandatory bibliography of the module Visions and Visioning that was thought to graduate students from the National School for Political and Governance Studies (Romania) as part of the course on the Management and Implementation of Research Projects.


The paper is a bold attempt to provide fresh clarifications on the nature of foresight knowledge and its relevance for policy-making. In itself, this audacious enterprise would have been reason enough to place this text in a central position within the current dialog on future research. However, the authors go even further, and attempt to provide an approach to the problem of assessing foresight knowledge.

Foresight, Deliberation and its relevance to policy

The authors perceive a shift towards foresight in the early 1980s, when it had begun to be generally acknowledged that technological developments are not linear and autonomous, and thus technology forecasting lost credibility. Foresight knowledge offered the promise to guide and support the policy process by means of exploring possible futures, identifying impacts on society (particularly, on certain categories of stakeholders or sectors of society), and developing visions based on such futures. At the same time, foresight activities seemed to be more suitable to deliberative process that characterize modern societies, allowing deliberation based on foresight knowledge that takes place in the sphere of policy-making and at the interface between science and policy. The first level of deliberation assumes a political consensus on the need of long-term planning, as well as foresight activities capability to early anticipate and identify threats, challenges and opportunities. At a second level, there is the deliberation of shared objectives, build upon the outcomes of political deliberation. A third deliberation level capitalizes a diverse range of knowledge inputs by applying foresight (scenario workshops, foresight techniques/studies/panels etc) to particular issues of concern.

External links

The paper is available for download.
Deliberating Foresight Knowledge for Policy and Foresight Knowledge Assessment

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