Foresight Examples & Case Studies

The Strategic Foresight (futures studies) can trace its routes in military planning and among energy companies like Royal Dutch Shell.

Today, the Singapore Government to BOSCH employ strategic foresight to navigate risks, explore opportunities, and develop long term strategies. Its application are diverse.

Strategic foresight have proven to deliver positive business impact. It is a tool to help us challenge deep seated assumptions and unlock innovative strategies through thinking more critically about change and the future.

Business Applications




  • Visioning



  • Stakeholder Alignment



  • Strategic Planning



  • Risk Management



  • Portfolio Planning



  • Design Innovation



  • Augment Design Thinking Processes



  • Disruptive Thinking

Business Impact of Foresight

From the School of Business & Social Sciences, Aarhus University (2018)

A study of over 300 multinational companies found that companies who are the most future prepared are 44% more likely to be outperformers in their markets

See full report from Aarhus Universiy

Businesses that Use Foreisght

Examples of notable companies that use corporate foresight and have been studied by academics:

  • Daimler ()
  • BASF ()
  • Deutsche Telekom ()
  • Shell ()
  • KPMG ()

Example of organizations that have issued job postings for foresight positions:

  • Arup: Senior Foresight Strategist
  • Toyota: Foresight and Trends Senior Analyst
  • Disney: Consumer Foresight Sr. Analyst
  • Facebook: Foresight Strategist
  • National University of Singapore: Strategist/Foresight Practitioner

Foresight for Gov't Diplomacy to New Products

Below is a small sample of the publically available futures-focused work. Visit OpenFutures, they have over 300 scenarios from future of energy to health issues.

Colombian Peace Process

Destino Colombia
Tools: Foresight Workshop, Scenario Planning

Adam Kahane of Reos Partners organized a series of futures scenario workshops called “Destino Colombia.” It brought together politicians, guerillas, military officers, journalists, business people and more to explore what was happening to their country and where it could go.

Former Colombian president and Noble Peace Prize Winner Juan Manuel Santos said Adam Kahane’s workshops were “one of the most significant events in the country’s search for peace.”

See “Destino Colombia” Case Study PDF | Article

Basque Culinary Center & The Future of Food

Towards Personalized Gastronomy: Basque 2050
Tools: Futures Game, Systems Mapping

The Basque Culinary Center’s Project Gastronomía brought together scientists, business leaders, and experts from various field to discuss the future of food in the Basque Country in the year 2050.

Experts used Project Gastronomía’s futures game to help discuss the food system and explore potential futures in a systems-based way. The resulting report was co-written by Daniel Riveong of Plural Futures.

See Website Link | PDF (English)

Intel & the Future of Wearables

The Tomorrow Project
Tools Used: Speculative Fiction

In 2011, Intel Corporation worked with the Center for Science and the Imagination to bring together leading innovative thinkers, futures-focused writers, science fiction writers, and others to think about how daily life could be transformed by technology. Notable contributes included Cory Doctorow, will.i.am,and and Douglas Ruskoff.

See Tomorrow Project Webpage

Social Changes & The Future of Marriage

The Future of Marriage
Tools Used: Speculative Fiction, Scenario Planning, Three Horizons, CLA

This speculative fiction explores the future of marriage in San Francisco in 2036. It explores current trends in family structures, such as cohabiting multi-family homes, and communal child rearing. It was developed by students of the California College of the Arts and featured on the Journal of Futures Studies.

See review of the work the Journal of Futures Studies

Demos Helsinki & Urban Planning

Nordic Cities Beyond Digital Disruption: A Novel Way to Develop Cities
Tools: Backcasting, Scenario Workshops

Over two years, the Centre for Sustainable Communications at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Demos Helsinki and 12 Nordic cities, companies and universities worked together to explore how urban life can be imporved using new services and technologies. The report summerizes the learnings, models, and potential scenarios developed through the collaboration.

See DEMOS Helsinki for the report

US Intelligence Community & Global Future Scenarios

Global Trends: Paradox of Progress
Scenarios, Artifact from the Future

The National Intelligence Council is responsible for long-term strategic thinking among the U.S. intelligence services. The NIC publishes long-term geopolitical scenarios for each incoming US president. This report was developed in 2017 led by NIC’s Strategic Futures Group and Deputy National Intelligence Officers.

See the NIC website here

Do you have a futures-related case study you’d like to share? Please send it over!

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