Revisiting Timeliness for Strategic Foresight and Warning and Risk Management

[Fully rewritten version v3] To exist, risk and foresight products as well as warnings must be delivered to those who must act upon them, the customers, clients or users. These anticipation analyses must also be actionable, which means that they need to include the right information necessary to see action taken. Yet, if you deliver […]

Winning the Race to Exascale Computing – AI, Computing Power and Geopolitics (4)

This article focuses on the race to exascale computing and its multi-dimensional political and geopolitical impacts, a crucial response major actors are implementing in terms of High Performance Computing (HPC) power, notably for the development of their artificial intelligence (AI) systems.  It thus ends for now our series on HPC as driver of and stake for AI, among the five we identified in Artificial Intelligence – Forces, Drivers and Stakes: the classical big data, HPC and the race to quantum supremacy as related critical uncertainty, algorithms, “sensors and expressors”, and finally needs and usages.

High Performance Computing Race and Power – Artificial Intelligence, Computing Power and Geopolitics (3)

This article explores three major challenges actors face when defining and carrying out their policies and answers in terms of high performance computing power (HPC) and artificial intelligence (AI), considering the political and geopolitical consequences of the feedback relationship linking AI in its Deep Learning component and computing power – hardware – or rather HPC. […]

Which U.S. Decline? The View from the U.S. National Intelligence Council

The second decade of the 21st century appears to be rough for the U.S.. Could it mean that American power is waning? The question of a putative decline of the U.S. regularly emerges in international relations and in the media since at least the 1970s (Kenneth Waltz; Theory of International Politics, 1979: 177-178). However, each […]

Pattern – Towards Polarization in the Western World?

The pattern that has been emerging over at least the beginning of the second decade of the twenty-first century is a rising polarization within Western society – or societies. In this article, we identified and analysed the trend through the related signal – the 14 November 2012 strikes. We evaluated the evolution toward polarization as […]

The Deep-Sea Resources Brief

Human societies currently face dwindling resources and rising competition for them in the contemporary “resources order.” Thus, besides and in accordance with other ways to handle this challenge, new types and sources of resources are increasingly valuable and can make a strategic difference for polities, as well as for humanity as a whole. Meanwhile, if we are to ever learn from our worrying present, we must also, continuously, make sure that the extraction and use of those new potential resources will not have any unfavourable impact on the planet and its ecosystem, including this biodiversity to which we belong.* As has now been known since the end of the nineteenth century (Ifremer, les Nodules, 2012), mineral resources lie on the […]

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2012 EVT – Scenario 2 – Panglossy: Same Old, Same Old

Last weeks’ summary: In 2012 EVT, Everstate (the ideal-type corresponding to our very real countries created to foresee the future of governance and of the modern nation-state) knows a rising dissatisfaction of its population. Everstate is plagued by a deepening budget deficit and an increasing need for liquidity, with a related creeping appropriation of resources while the strength of central public power weakens to the profit of various elite groups. An outdated world-view that promotes misunderstanding, disconnect and thus inadequate actions presides to its destiny. Henceforth, the political authorities are increasingly unable to deliver the security citizens seek. Risks to the legitimacy of the whole system increases. Alarmed by the rising difficulties and widespread discontent, the governing authorities decide to do something. Of the three potential scenarios or stories that […]

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2012 EVT: Seeking Security (The Chronicles of Everstate)

Summary of our scenario so far: In 2012 EVT, in Everstate, the ideal-type corresponding to our very real countries created to foresee the future of the modern nation-state, the population’s discontent increases. It is bound to continue to do so, as a result of various pressures and threats, most of them inevitable, imperfectly identified, and not understood. Indeed, Everstatans feel both directly and indirectly the impact of those pressures, which affect their sense of security and thus generate discontent (link to previous article).

As a result, now, Everstatans continue to seek a security that is appearing as increasingly distant and elusive…. read more

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Delivery of Strategic Foresight and Warning products: learning from the social and mobile web?

As Cynthia Grabo underlines, a warning does not exist if it is not delivered. Similarly, a foresight product – or risk assessment or horizon scan – has to be delivered. Furthermore, if foresight and warning are to be actionable, then clients or customers – those to whom the product has been delivered – must pay heed to the foresight, or warning. What they decide to do with those is another story. Yet, from the point of view of SF&W, they must receive them, know they have received them and, as much as possible, consider them.

by Philip Devere, FAL, via Wikimedia Commons

Strategic foresight and futures’ efforts, as well as related literature, with a few exceptions, have rarely focused explicitly on this specific part of the overall process. Yet, it is crucial. As a first step, it has much to learn from the warning part of the activity. Then, both strategic foresight and warning may also have much to learn from the mobile and social networking approach, as it is being …

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