From Process to Creating your Analytical Model for Strategic Foresight and Warning, Early Warning, Risk Management and Scenario-building
With this course you will enhance your practical skills to anticipate geostrategic and geopolitical risk and crisis, instability, war, international and national political and security threats and opportunities, in a rapidly evolving world environment (see detailed modules below). Meanwhile, you will understand these issues even better.
The course is focused on analysis. You will practically develop, step by step, your anticipatory analytical skills to tackle complex geopolitical contemporary issues. You will then be able to use this practice with most strategic foresight and warning, risk management and anticipatory methodologies (see how is the course delivered? and your input as an active leaner and your schedule below). You will notably learn to properly map an issue for strategic foresight, early warning and risk management.
Including many practical examples and exercises from the real world, the course is designed and taught specifically for analysts and their officers, to help them overcome the many challenges they face and develop further analytical excellence (see teaching and training below). The course will be of interest to all those who desire to acquire fundamental practical abilities to anticipate strategically global, international and domestic political risks, threats and also opportunities.
With this course, you will notably
- Review the fundamentals of “anticipation”: why foreseeing the future matters; which elements must be included; what is the overall process used;
- Identify many biases of various types – one of the major enemies of analysts and anticipation – and learn how to mitigate them;
- De-dramatise the idea of “models”, on the contrary, become a pro of modeling through a progressive, easy to follow, use of graphs (maps);
- Enhance your mastery in making dynamic political analysis;
- Learn to map properly any international and national security issue for anticipation analysis, making sure you are not getting ready “to fight the last war”.
- Use the mapping and the map to enhance your analyses as well as your early warning and be ready for scenario-building.
Watch a short presentation trailer
The course is principally designed for
- analysts and future analysts in issues related to crises, politics, international politics, security, defence, war, peacebuilding, etc.
- risk, security, strategic foresight and warning officers.
For all actors concerned:
- private sector staff;
- government officials;
- staff of international organisations and NGOs;
- military professionals.
Corporate and Non-Profit Groups:
If you want to register a large number of participants, you can contact us.
This course is designed to benefit from the new online learning environment while remaining grounded in proper classical high-level teaching academic credentials, executive course training, as well as practical experience, including as analyst of international relations issues notably for anticipation (check the website for many various examples of analyses).
Dr Helene Lavoix holds a PhD in international relations from the University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) (and a MSc with distinction in international politics of Asia, SOAS).
She is an experienced and international lecturer. She currently teaches at Master level at the renown SciencesPo – Paris School of International Affairs (PSIA). Previously, she taught at the RSIS, Nanyang University in Singapore, Master in Strategic Studies. She also trains executives, officials and analysts either with tailor-designed training for public, corporate, and NGOs’ clients or in dedicated programs (Brussels with Vesalius College, Geneva with the Geneva Center for Security Policy – GCSP – 2015).
She has more than twenty years practical experience as an analyst in international relations specialised over the last ten years in strategic foresight and early warning. She is also fully acquainted with the various specificities of SF&W and risk management, from analysis to the challenges met by officers through her work as international coordinator for the Global Futures Forum and, even more directly as Director of the Red (Team) Analysis Society. See full bio here.
What They Say- Students and Participants
“This course [Sciences-Po-PSIA Master] is one of the few that are actually useful, putting theory into practice. I learned so much in the way of foresight and warning that I began to consider a viable career in risk analysis and crisis management.” Nicole Stroner (U.S. – Master student).
This course is delivered through 14 units in 4 modules.
It is planned to take 11 weeks to complete, as average, depending on participants. You may, of course, set the pace for yourself, according to what interests you most and to your constraints, notably in terms of time.
A training available 24/7 for 6 full months
You can benefit from access to the course for 6 full months. With usual training, and even with webinars and online conferences, once you have finished your training, you only have your notes and your memories. Here you can go back to each unit and use it fully how often you want and need.
Adapted to the online environment
Each unit includes a “lecture” video or a software tutorial (11 lectures, 3 tutorials), created to consider the specificities of online learning. Indeed, videos should not last more than twenty minutes as the attention span is reduced on the internet compared with a classical setting. “Research has shown the most successful courses in terms of content retention and course completion run in the 15-20 minute range” (Randhir Vieira, eLearn Magazine, March 2014).
Furthermore, shorter videos will allow for easier further consultation in case of need. Finally, shorter videos also allow for watching them more easily considering busy schedules.
Active learning, for each unit, has been sought to allow for a better learning and assimilation process. We have thus created exercises specifically for this online course, to allow for practice. We have also designed and incorporated tests.
For most units, specific readings are provided in two categories. You are highly encouraged to read the “recommended” ones. This reading is considered as a full part of each unit’s learning process. The section “further readings” is provided as an option, should you seek to further develop this or that aspect of the unit.
Each unit (save those with software products tutorials) ends with an online interactive computer-marked assignment (a quiz). This test not only allows you to measure your progress, but also makes you benefit from “the testing effect”, according to which “the effort of retrieving knowledge from memory facilitates learning” (Gauri, Reyes, Mindflash, 28 July 2014). Finally, successfully taking a test, means you have completed a unit. To complete all units is necessary to obtain the final certificate.
The great advantage of online course is that you may progress at your own pace. You may dedicate a variable amount of time to each unit according to previous understanding, interest and needs.
Your input as an “active learner” per unit can thus be adapted according to your busy schedule and the depth of knowledge you wish to acquire.
Software tutorials constitute two full units. You will then use these software products in the framework of the exercises of following units. Thanks to the principle of online courses, you will be able to watch the tutorials as often as you need and when necessary, while practicing. As a result, you will develop an easy and stress-free mastery of these software products. Using them, with all the advantages they provide, will become as easy and as natural as using a word processor.
Some modicum of structure is also very helpful to frame an endeavour or, actually, any project. Furthermore, we are all very busy and time flies. Online learning is set in circumstances that are very different from those to which we are all used with classical training, when we physically go to a training session. In that case we have materially freed time to learn.
With online learning, you spare transportation time, sometimes hotels time, coffee breaks and lengthy lunches, to say nothing of induced costs. This helps you fit in-depth training much more easily in your agendas. Thus, you can go further compared with what you could have achieved during a “physical” training. But, it also means that you will probably not have freed time for your training.
So, to help you creating this time for your course and learning process, you should plan for one week per unit maximum, even if you have not done all the reading. Ultimately you are the one who will decide how much time you want to attribute to each unit. For example, for a specific unit you may decide spend more time to make more readings and exercises. You will receive an email each time you completed a unit (i.e. once you successfully complete the corresponding test), which you can use as an agenda reminder.
As a result the whole course should take you 11 weeks to complete. As explained above, you may also choose, of course, to spend more time on one unit or another, or actually less. In this way, you fully adapt the course to your needs.
You will receive a certificate on successful completion (once you successfully completed all the tests).
The course, your progress and the units will be accessible from the item “my account” (right below the login, in the menu) or from the next item “my online courses”.
If you wish to obtain further details and have more questions on our online course, do not hesitate to contact us. Alternatively, contact us so that we can create a taylor-made training for your specific needs we shall deliver in our premises.
Module 1 – The mission of the SF&W analyst and officer
This module is made of two units. It explains first what is anticipation of national and international security issues or political and geopolitical problems. It stresses why it matters for public and corporate actors. Then, it underlines the main aims that analysts and officers seek to attain, and spells out major challenges. It presents the overall process and methodology for strategic foresight and warning or risk analysis.
Module 2 – The fundamentals of an analysis
This module is composed of 5 units focusing on the fundamentals of an analysis. It will first deal with biases, which are so challenging for analysis. Biases are unconscious mental errors, which, most of the time, hinder analysis. It is thus crucial to understand them before to begin tackling the practice of analysis, if we want to mitigate biases-related errors. The module will not only deal with the well-known cognitive biases but address all types of biases. Each time a bias will be explained, ways to mitigate it or cope with it will be suggested. The module will then explain and “de-dramatize” models and underline their importance for analysis. It will introduce progressively the use of graphs and networks for analytical modeling.
This module will introduce you to two open source and free software products. Those are the software that you will use throughout the rest of the course. The module will first underline the advantages of using these software for anticipatory analysis. Then two tutorials will allow you becoming familiar with each software product.
Module 4 – Building your graph: From Factors, Actors and Variables to the Construction of the Model
This module includes 4/5 units, the last one being a double unit also incorporating a software tutorial. Here, you will build upon what you saw previously. You will use the knowledge acquired to learn progressively to build a full graph or network for a national or international security issue, or risk, optimised for strategic foresight and warning, risk analysis, or more generally all anticipatory analysis. You will improve your skills at identifying those actors and factors crucial for analysing geopolitical, global and national/domestic security issues. You will become familiar with transforming them in a way that allows for proper future-oriented analysis. Finally, this module will explain how to put everything together to obtain a model that is usable across needs.