Innovation systemsmust be designed toallow for differentfuture scenarios.
Foresight processes allow the evaluation and design of different future scenarios.In foresight projects, AIT supports, among other things, public institutions inplanning and implementing policy strategies.
Analysis of technological potentials, assessmentof risks and identification of new business areas
Recognizing and assessing long-term changes indifferent areas of society (system changes anddiscontinuities)
Development of future images involving differentstakeholders as part of participatory procedures
Strategy development in research and innovationpolicy
Development of options for tackling majorchallenges (health, climate change, increasingresource scarcity)
Assessment of the contribution of social andtechnological innovations in transformativechange processes
FRESHER - FORESIGHT AND MODELLING FOREUROPEAN HEALTH POLICY AND REGULATION
This is the first EU-wide foresight project to capturetrends, futures and policy options in the publichealth sector by means of external impact factors.Qualitative trends as well as quantifiable geo-dataand micro-simulations for certain regions of Eu-rope are used for this purpose. The focus is on thedevelopment and curbing of non-communicablediseases which account for the largest cost in thehealth care system of the EU, such as diabetes andheart diseases.
The results of the project are not only intended toprovide options for effective and inexpensive mea-sures for curbing civilization diseases to Europeanand national health policy areas, but also to relatedpolicy areas.
ENERGY EFFICIENCY ROADMAP
As part of a participatory foresight process, an R & Droadmap for the development of technologies to in-crease energy efficiency in Austrian industry was de-veloped together with representatives of companiesof energy-intensive industries. The roadmap pro-vides information on the priority areas of researchand provides an overview of the necessary RTI policymeasures from 2030 to 2050.
We cannot predict social and technological developments, but to a cer-tain extent we can shape them. Foresight as a systematic, participatoryand multidisciplinary process is used to perceive, structure and inter-pret current trends in specific subject areas. In this way, scenarios ofpossible, but also of desirable futures can be designed, and design lati-tude options can be explored. Foresight is a method for reducing thecomplexity of the present, anticipating different future variants and thusderiving strategies for today‘s actions.
THINKING, DEBATING AND SHAPING THE FUTURE
„Thinking the Future“, „Debating the Future“ and „Shaping the Future“ –Foresight is action-oriented. It is not just the analysis of possible futurevariants that makes this method what it is, but the associated negotiationprocess of the involved and affected stakeholders who thus participate inactively shaping the future. Foresight builds on participation. What can itachieve, who are the participants and what is the objective of a participa-tion? Defining this in a comprehensive manner and putting it into practiceis part of the practical project work and theoretical studies.
FORESIGHT FOR POLICY
In numerous Foresight projects, AIT supports public institutions in plan-ning and implementing policy strategies. The AIT experts focus on emer-gent and future developments in research, innovation and society as wellas on the policies for designing these developments. These are examinedat different levels, from the company and sectoral level through to the re-gional, national and European level. This involves such diverse areas asstrategy development in research and innovation policy or the organiza-tion of room for maneuver in order to cope with major challenges such ashealth, climate change or resource depletion. However, Foresight for Pol-icy is always one thing: Foresight in the public interest. Which Foresightapproaches can we apply to organizations and companies, which onesmust we adapt? These questions are answered by means of policy-ori-ented projects and in the course of well-founded studies.
The challenge for economic players is to remain able to act and plandespite considerable complexity and technological upheavals. A Fore-sight process includes a systematic look at the medium- to longer-termfuture with the aim of identifying these with the greatest economic andsocial benefits, and it thus helps in strategic planning. AIT supportscompanies and industry associations in overcoming challenges and inactively shaping their future. New and largely self-developed participa-tory and creative processes are being used here. This is how medium-to-long-term oriented future models are developed which are at thecenter of every strategy development.
Fotos: AIT/Krischanz Zeiller, AIT/Rita Skof
Dr. Susanne Giesecke, SeniorScientist, Center for InnovationSystems & Policy
Univ.-Prof. Dr. Karl-HeinzLeitner, Senior Scientist, Centerfor Innovation Systems & Policy
Dr. Beatrix Wepner, Scientist,Center for Innovation Systems& Policy