On 14 July 2019, new Chinese statistics revealed that growth in China was lowering. Media sensationally reported the news. For example, The New York Times titled “China’s Economic Growth Hits 27-Year Low as Trade War Stings” (Keith Bradsher). Meanwhile what is happening in the area of new technologies? Are other indicators available? Indeed, the famous […]
Credit Image: ESO/José Francisco Salgado (josefrancisco.org) Using horizon scanning, each week, we collect weak – and less weak – signals. These point to new, emerging, escalating or stabilising problems. As a result, they indicate how trends or dynamics evolve. With the heightening of the tensions between the U.S. and China, what we now monitor is […]
Riots and protests have been progressively, and in an accelerating way, occurring in many countries, starting with France in 2005, spreading throughout most of the world, from the Arab Spring to Thailand through Hong Kong, the U.S. or, more recently Venezuela, Algeria and France with the Yellow Vest movement at the end of 2018 and […]
Credit Image: ESO/José Francisco Salgado (josefrancisco.org) Using horizon scanning, each week, we collect weak – and less weak – signals. These point to new, emerging, escalating or stabilising problems. As a result, they indicate how trends or dynamics evolve. This week actually would tend to lack an obvious overwhelming focus. Alternatively, the accumulation of signals […]
One of the current focuses regarding Artificial Intelligence is on ethics. For example, on 8 April 2019 the European Commission published its Communication Building Trust in Human-Centric Artificial Intelligence. Google, despite set backs, also tries to implement an AI ethics board (Kelsey Piper, “Exclusive: Google cancels AI ethics board in response to outcry“, Vox, 4 […]
This article explores the way artificial intelligence (AI) is inserted within its environment through the Internet of Things in a particular domain, agriculture. As a result, “smart agriculture”, a whole new way to produce food, is born. We look at the way various actors include AI in farming and thus envision and develop the future […]
Foreseeing the future, whatever the name given to the endeavour, includes two major tasks.
The first one is, of course, the analysis, the process according to which the foresight, forecast, warning, or, more broadly, anticipation is obtained.
The second one is less obvious, or rather so evident that it may be overlooked. It is, however, no less vital than analysis. We need to deliver the output of the analytical process to those who need the foresight, the decision-makers or policy-makers. Ideally, the recipients must understand that output, because they will act on it. They need to integrate the new knowledge received in the decisions they will take.*
A huge challenge runs across these tasks: biases.
We must overcome the various natural and constructed biases – systematic mental errors – that limit human understanding. This article will present first the classical way we deal with biases: we consider them – quite rightly – as “enemies” and we devote much effort to mitigate them. Then, considering the specificity of the delivery stage, this article suggests that another strategy is necessary. We need to turn our usual strategy on its head and befriend biases. In that case, scenarios become a tool of choice for an enhanced delivery of our foresight to decision-makers […]
In February 2019, during the Saudi Arabia-China economic forum, the two countries signed for more than 28 billion dollars deals (“Saudi-Chinese Investment Forum Signs 35 Deals During Crown Prince’s Beijing Visit”, Ashark Al Awsat, 22 February, 2019). These gigantic deals are part of the growing Saudi-China relationship. They are the economic and political continuation of […]