Every year, The Economist, in its “The World in…” series, assesses it successes and failures regarding its past yearly forecasts (e.g. for 2012). This is an exemplary behaviour that should be adopted by all practitioners: if we are to deliver good and actionable strategic foresight and warning, and to improve our process, methodology and thus our final products, then we should always evaluate our work. Having now completed our last series of updates on the state of play for the Syrian war, we can now start assessing how our own scenarios and indicators fared so far, if they need to be updated and the potential methodological improvements that we should endeavour. Evaluating the scenarios As the Geneva conference took place (see previous… Read More
The evaluation of our 2012 predictions’ sample underlines notably a widespread conventional view of national security, novel issues being ignored; a relative inability to assess timing whilst our understanding of issues fares relatively well; the existence of major biases, notably regarding China, Russia, and the U.S; the difficulty of prediction for novel issues and old issues in new context.
The Economist shows the lead in a courageous yet hardly ever done exercise: going back to our own foresight and assess, in the light of the present, what was right and what was wrong. It provides us with an example of how such lessons learned could be endeavoured, underlines questions that should be asked and key challenges for anticipation, and exemplifies how biases can derail foresight.
Jennifer Mc Lean, What Will Happen In 2012? (video) Various authors for beyondbrics: a series – 12 for 2012 – that beyondbrics is running on key emerging markets topics for the coming year, The Financial Times, starting Dec 27, 2011: Ivan Tchakarov of Renaissance Capital, 12 for 2012: Will Putin 2.0 be any different? Dec 27, 2011 Murat Üçer, 12 for 2012: Turkey’s tightrope, Dec 28, 2011 Jonathan Garner, Morgan Stanley, 12 for 2012: expect an EM equities rally, Dec 29, 2011 Dong Tao of Credit Suisse, 12 for 2012: China will go slow for longer, but a hard landing is unlikely, Dec 30, 2011. Louise Arbour, Next Year’s Wars: Ten conflicts to watch in 2012, Foreign Policy, Dec 27, 2011… Read More
2012 predictions (3) Morgan Stanley, Global 2012 Outlook, Global economic Forum, December 15, 2011. EconMatters, Debt Crisis 2012: Forget Europe, Check Out Japan, Zerohedge, 12/27/2011. Council on Foreign Relations, The World Next Year: 2012 – A preview of world events in the coming year, (podcast), CFR multimedia, December 22, 2011. Council on Foreign Relations, Preventive Priorities Survey: 2012, CFR.com, December 8, 2011. Council on Foreign Relations, Five Economic Trends to Watch in 2012, CFR.com, December 28, 2011. Sundeep Waslekar (Strategic Foresight Group), 12 Trends To Watch For 2012 – OpEd, Eurasia Review, December 27, 2011. Lance Ulanoff, 5 Tech Trends to Watch in 2012, Mashable Social Media, December 28, 2011. Zachary Karabell, 2012 Economic Outlook: Why Things Are Better Than We Think, the… Read More
2012 predictions (2) ZeroHedge, Globalization, The Decade Ahead, And Asymmetric Returns, 12/26/2011 ZeroHedge, Jim Rogers 2012 Outlook: Pessimism With Scattered Crises, 12/26/2011 Derek Abma on 2012 predictions by Douglas Porter, deputy chief economist with BMO Capital Markets, “Canada to avoid recession next year despite Europe,” The Vancouver Sun, Financial Post, December 26, 2011 Ryan Mauro, Top 12 Threats to Watch in 2012, Family Security Matters, December 27, 2011 Tony Karon, “If 2011 Was a Turbulent Year for Obama’s Foreign Policy, 2012 Looks Set to Be Worse,” (Survey of the top ten global crisis issues facing the U.S. in the new year), Time.com Global Spin, December 27, 2011. Moneycontrol bureau, “Keep your coats on! It’s going to be a stormy 2012,” (summary of financial and eco… Read More