The COVID-19 and post-COVID-19 worlds are fraught with uncertainties. We still have to face many unknown regarding the disease and thus the pandemics (e.g. Julie Steenhuysen, “Scientists just beginning to understand the many health problems caused by COVID-19“, Reuters, 26 June 2020).

Yet, we must take decisions and act when the fog clouds our horizon.

Scenarios are the best tool to help actors handle uncertainty. They allow for more robust decision-making. They help struggling against unpreparedness.

Of course, ideally, these scenarios also need to follow a proper methodology to be truly actionable (e.g. Are your Strategic Foresight Scenarios Valid? Test and Check List in 6 points). However, here, our purpose is not to evaluate the methodologies used, nor to validate or endorse any of the products below. Whichever the methodology, scenarios also help open up the mind-forged manacles to borrow the words of William Blake, think out of the box and overcome silos. They may also be first steps towards improving the quality of our scenarios.

Thus, this probably incomplete bibliography aims to salute the collective work of professionals. Their efforts should contribute to handle the pandemic at best and to navigate the post-pandemic world (once we shall have reached this stage, which is not now). The bibliography also aims at providing decision-makers with further ideas and scenarios they may not have envisioned. Finally, it is intended as a tool for students and practitioners.

As futurists or strategic foresight practitioners (including all scientists using scenarios), if you created scenarios regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and/or the post-COVID-19 world, please don’t hesitate to let us know using the comments.

Strategic Foresight and Futures Studies scenarios

Air Force Warfighting Integration Capability (AFWIC), Global Futures Report, Alternative Futures of Geopolitical Competition in a Post-Covid-19 World, June 2020.

Atos, What the world will look like after the COVID-19 crisis, May 2020

Alfonso Bruno, Valerio & Vittorio Emanuele Parsi, Three Scenarios for a Post-Coronavirus World, Fair Observer, Jun 04, 2020.

Borchert, Heiko, Looking beyond the Abyss: eight scenarios on the post-Covid-19 business landscape, April 2020.

Burrows Mathew J.Peter Engelke, What world post-COVID-19? Three scenarios, The Atlantic Council, 23 April 2020.

Colyer, Timothy, 4 Scenarios for the Post-Coronavirus Economy Through the Lens of Post-War Recovery, Brink, The edge of risk, 24 May 2020.

Dumaine, Carol & Stanley Feder, “The Covid19 Crisis: What’s at Stake?
Alternative Scenarios and Implications for the U.S. 2020-2023
“, 20-20 Foresight Project, Based on information as of May 24, 2020. – and related article: Jonathan Aberman, “What’s our potential post-Covid financial scenario?“, Washington Business Journal, 18 June 2020.

French Government, Avis n°7 du Conseil scientifique COVID-19, 4 SCENARIOS POUR LA PERIODE POST-CONFINEMENT, 2 June 2020.

For further epidemiologists’ scenarios, see Models for the COVID-19 Second Wave.

Futuribles, Crise du Covid-19 : quels scénarios pour les 18 prochains mois ? 

Henning, Job C., Saunders, Jeffrey, and Koran, Michal, There’s no returning to business as usual — geopolitical scenarios shaping a post-COVID-19 world, 8 May 2020. With short videos illustrating each scenarios, which is a great idea.

Henning, Saunders, and Koran, May 2020 – Scenario 1 out of 6 Scenarios shaping a post-COVID-19 world – Watch the other scenarios here (scroll down the page).

IIEA Expert Voices publication, The Multilateral Order Post-Covid: Expert Voices, June 2020 – pdf.

ING, Four scenarios for the global economy after Covid-19, April 2020

Lavoix, Helene, Scenarios to Navigate the COVID-19 Pandemic and its Possible Futures (1), The Red Team Analysis Society, July 2020.

Talwar, Rohit, Scenarios for a post-pandemic world, Maddystudio, 2 July 2020

The Long Crisis Network for Local Trust, Our COVID Future -The Long Crisis Scenarios, May 2020.

van Til, Frederik, THREE SCENARIOS FOR GLOBALISATION IN A POST-COVID-19 WORLD, Clingendael Spectator, 1 April 2020.

Wade, Michael, Scenario Planning for a Post-COVID-19 World, IMD, May 2020.

Quantitative tools and scenarios

COVID-19 Scenarios – Quantitative tool, (see development by various universities and scientists :Biozentrum, University of Basel, Karolinska Institute (Stockholm, Sweden), etc.

Big Four and large strategy firms’ “scenarios”

Deloitte, Covid-19 Economic cases: Scenarios for business leaders/Recovering from COVID-19, Economic cases for resilient leaders 18-24 months, 6 April 2020.

McKinsey, COVID-19 series


Featured image: Alexandra_Koch de Pixabay 


Published by Dr Helene Lavoix (MSc PhD Lond)

Dr Helene Lavoix, PhD Lond (International Relations), is the Director of The Red (Team) Analysis Society. She is specialised in strategic foresight and warning for national and international security issues. Her current focus is on Artificial Intelligence, Quantum Science, and Security. She teaches at Master level at SciencesPo-PSIA.

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