Foresight Adopters in Asia-Pacific region

Many APEC members such as Japan, China, Australia, South Korea, and New Zealand, have chosen to run comprehensive national foresight programs. National foresight for specific sectors also occurs, such as a Thai foresight study of the future for agriculture. Many economies in the APEC region have embarked on their sectoral foresight projects recently.


Study Techniques

   Successful foresight projects are designed to suit specific circumstances and objectives. Many techniques are used within foresight studies for consulting experts, gathering information and generating innovative ideas. No single technique alone can lead to a successful foresight project. Many techniques must be carefully integrated into a coherent overall foresight project design. Techniques commonly used in foresight studies include:


The Benefits of Foresight

The benefits of foresight are both intangible and tangible. The intangible benefits that arise from the foresight process itself include:


Key Features

Five key features of foresight are:

1. Structure, Rigor, and Creativity

Foresight is based on careful analysis of the current situation, trends and expected impacts of possible developments and disruptive events. Free-ranging discussion and debate are valuable but they are not enough. A critical part of foresight is assessing and putting together different sources of information and different points of view.


3 Major Challenges

When looking into the future, Foresight addresses three major challenges:

1. Complexity

Cause and effect relationships are not always obvious. There may be many reasons for this: causal factors may interact; there may be long time delays between the causes and effects; and there may be inter-societal differences, intervening variables and other problems. Many experts argue that the world is becoming ever more complex due to the pace of technological change and the greater global interconnectedness of financial and economic systems.



The development of foresight has been fuelled by trends within three disciplines

1. Policy development

Decision-makers have started to recognize the need to broaden the sources of input to policy development. This is partly a reflection of the desire for greater democracy and increased legitimacy for political processes. It also reflects the recognition that knowledge and expertise is diffused more widely and that the world is growing ever more complex, and, therefore, narrow planning cannot be effective.