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Open Access
Article
Publication date: 16 March 2015

Jim Dator and Ian Yeoman

Futurist Jim Dator provides a personal insight of how he “sees” the past, present, and futures of Hawaiian tourism. The paper aims to discuss this issue.

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Abstract

Purpose

Futurist Jim Dator provides a personal insight of how he “sees” the past, present, and futures of Hawaiian tourism. The paper aims to discuss this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

Ian Yeoman interviews one of the world's most prominent and respected futurists, Professor Jim Dator, from the Futures Research Center of the University of Hawaii at Manoa's Political Science Department.

Findings

Like a climatologist, futurists discuss long‐term futures which are very uncertain, controversial, and often frightening stories. The past tells how the present occurred. Understanding that story is essential before considering the future. The growth of tourism is a fabulous story dependent on many developments whose future is uncertain. The tourism industry may want a “more of the same” trajectory of continued economic growth but a number changes are on the horizon which Dator calls “The Unholy Trinity,” namely the end of cheap and abundant energy; a profoundly unstable environment and a dysfunctional global economic system. Dator concludes that no government now governs satisfactorily, and so the future of tourism is extremely precarious and uncertain.

Originality/value

The interview provides both insight into how tourism has evolved and foresight of what could occur in the futures. Central to the interview is Dator's identification of the Unholy Trinity, Plus One, that suggests that the future will not neither be like the present nor like the future the tourism industry has hoped for in terms of continued economic growth. The originality and value of Dator's frank views are thought provoking, going beyond present wisdom and comfort.

Details

Journal of Tourism Futures, vol. 1 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2055-5911

Keywords

Abstract

Details

Translating Knowledge Management Visions into Strategies
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-763-9

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 23 July 2020

Michael Conlin

381

Abstract

Details

Journal of Tourism Futures, vol. 6 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2055-5911

Article
Publication date: 13 April 2015

Shermon O. Cruz

The purpose of this paper is to provide a critical and informative exploration of the emerging roles and rising influence of the Global South in shaping the future of global…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a critical and informative exploration of the emerging roles and rising influence of the Global South in shaping the future of global governance. Specifically, it inquires into the following questions: How is the Global South impacting the way we govern globally? What are the pushers, pulls and weights to the futures of global governance? Using Jim Dator’s alternative futures archetype, what is the future of global governance? What are the emerging issues and trends?

Design/methodology/approach

It uses Sohail Inayatullah’s futures triangle to map the drivers – the pushes, pulls and weights of global governance and Jim Dator’s archetypes – continued economic growth, collapse, conserver and transformation – to imagine and construct alternative futures of global governance.

Findings

The futures triangle analysis maps and reveals three diverse but causally linked Global South narratives of global governance. The pulls of the future include the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa leading the way, and emerging economies reinforcing the pluralization of global governance discourses and systems. New governance regimes create new global governance dynamics and North – South relations. Their increasing social, political and economic clout leads to new governance structures. The Global South’s rising human development index, economic growth, decreasing financial reliance, the rise of minilateralism and South – South cooperation is a push of the present. Weights are recurring financial constraints, their lack of technical capacity, existing international laws, stagnating bureaucracy, poverty, domestic issues and state centrism (among others). Four alternative global governance scenarios emerge: a harmonious world is everybody’s business – a state-centric and economic growth global governance future. Here, the dynamics of global governance remain the same as zero-sum thinking informs the rules of the game. In dangerous transitions and the rise of the rest, however, the status quo is disrupted as power shifts rapidly and detrimentally. Then, in mosaic of the old structure, the South embraces protectionism, and the old vanguards return. Finally, in all boats rise substantially, power is redistributed as emerging states gain larger, formal (and informal) leadership roles in global governance. The global world order is re-designed for the Global South. A world parliament is created and stronger regional confederation or unions emerge.

Research limitations/implications

This paper extensively utilizes existing and emerging literature, official reports, blogs, interviews, books and other digital texts on global governance. The sources relevance is analyzed using the futures triangle tool and dissected to present four detailed scenarios using Dator’s alternative futures archetype. This study seeks to initially explore alternative futures of global governance from the perspective of the Global South. While some studies have approached the topic, only a few authors have addressed global governance using futures tools and methods. The goal of this research is to map and explore some alternative futures of global governance. The paper is less useful in predicting what lies ahead. Its intention is to highlight the “rise of the different” and to create a space for more meaningful conversations on global governance.

Practical implications

This research could provide futurists, policy-makers, international relations scholars and global governance advocates some alternative narratives, frameworks and images of global governance. While it does not offer any specific structures and solutions, it offers a number of emerging issues and perspectives from the Global South that decision-makers and institutions might want to consider as they rethink global governance.

Social implications

This paper highlights the emerging roles and perspectives of the Global South in global governance. It identifies some “trading zones” and “emerging issues” that may inspire actors to create new global governance spaces, innovate alternative narratives and design new frameworks of global governance.

Originality/value

It maps and constructs some plausible scenarios of global governance that emphasize Global South perspectives while using futures tools and methods.

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 11 March 2024

Claudio Marciano, Alex Fergnani and Alberto Robiati

The purpose of this study is to propose an innovative and efficient process in urban policy-making that combines a divergent and creative method with a convergent and strategic…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to propose an innovative and efficient process in urban policy-making that combines a divergent and creative method with a convergent and strategic one. At the same time, the purpose is also to propose a useful innovation to enforce the usability of both methods. On the one hand, mission-oriented policies run the risk of being overly focused on the present and of not being able to develop preparedness in organization. On the other hand, scenario development has the reverse problem it often does not point out how to use scenario narratives to inform and devise short-term strategic actions.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper proposes an innovative methodological approach, the mission-oriented scenarios, which hybridizes Mazzucato's mission-oriented public policy framework with Jim Dator's Manoa school four futures method. The proposed methodological innovation emerges from a urban foresight academic-led project carried out in the context of the Metropolitan City of Turin, Italy, where a first application of the mission-oriented scenarios was tested on six different focal issues (from reindustrialization to cultural policies) and the scenario narratives were used as sources for the grounding of 12 missions and 48 strategic actions towards 2030.

Findings

Mission-oriented scenarios can contribute to the generation of more sustainable and inclusive urban public policies. This methodological proposal is based on an original mix of knowledge exchange procedures borrowed from methodological approaches with different backgrounds: the mission-oriented and the archetypal scenarios. Their conjunction could support the formulation of ambitious yet pragmatic policies, giving a plurality of actors the opportunity to act and establish fruitful and lasting partnerships.

Originality/value

The paper reconstructs one of the first urban foresight projects carried out in a major Italian city by two prestigious universities and exposes a methodological innovation resulting from reflection on the strengths and weaknesses of the project, which opens the door to the development of a new scenario technique.

Details

foresight, vol. 26 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 1 December 2002

Jim Dator

254

Abstract

Details

On the Horizon, vol. 10 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1074-8121

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 November 2014

Jim Dator

This paper aims to offer real and explicit reasons for viewing the futures of humanity and Earth as positive, fulfilling and meaningful, if humans view it as such and act to make…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to offer real and explicit reasons for viewing the futures of humanity and Earth as positive, fulfilling and meaningful, if humans view it as such and act to make it so. The paper incorporates the results of several recent research projects and activities that were based on the assumptions of an earlier paper titled, “The Unholy Trinity, Plus One.” It argues that the conclusions of the original paper are even more obvious and urgent than they were originally, and that while an “alternative futures” perspective must always be the basis of any statements about or actions toward the futures, the concerns of The Unholy Trinity, Plus One, are now part of a “new normal” that must be incorporated in each of the alternatives. This paper emphasizes that this “new normal” is, and must be prepared for as, a splendid opportunity for humans to start on new adventures; that one episode of human history (based on cheap and abundant energy, a benign environment, effective government and continued economic growth) is over, and a world with different challenges and opportunities for New Beginnings has already opened up. It concludes by offering an example of how the transition might be approached and managed positively and effectively.

Design/methodology/approach

Both papers relied heavily on a combination of trend analysis and emerging issues analysis viewed through the lens of four generic alternative futures for understanding continuing trends and anticipating new, emerging issues, and for then formulating appropriate anticipatory responses to them.

Findings

The fundamental findings reconfirm and deepen the original findings – that it is far too late to prevent or postpone the transformative effects of The Unholy Trinity, Plus One; that one must and can prepare for and welcome them as providing humans now and in the immediate futures with an opportunity for innovation, identity, meaning and vibrant lives. The research and practical experiences and simulations illuminated ways in which these positive futures might be achieved.

Research limitations/implications

It is urgent that humans now turn their attention from either denying the fact of overwhelming change or trying to prop up old economic, governmental and educational systems, and begin to invent new systems that are appropriate for making the transition from the old environment to new ones.

Social implications

At the end of the paper, the authors offer one example of a successful transition, based on the research. It is presented as though humans are in Hawaii in the future, after oil has stopped flowing, along with the imported food, products and tourists upon which humans are now entirely dependent, and Hawaii has once again become entirely self-sufficient and prosperous.

Originality/value

The main focus of the paper, in contrast to most that deal with this issue, is to encourage readers not only to consider the inevitability of rapid and extensive social, environmental, resource and institutional change, but also, by viewing the situation as a positive, welcomed opportunity for innovation and improvement, actually to make it so.

Details

foresight, vol. 16 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 December 2005

Jim Dator

To review what “quality” meant to universities historically and might mean in the future.

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Abstract

Purpose

To review what “quality” meant to universities historically and might mean in the future.

Design/methodology/approach

Written as a keynote talk for The Australian Universities Quality Forum 2004, this paper problematizes “universities” and “quality” by reviewing the way changing communication modalities have changed the meaning of the two terms over time.

Findings

After reviewing some of the literature forecasting alternative futures of universities, the paper settles on a preferred future in which all education, higher and lower, is driven by the logic, best practices, and evolving technologies of electronic games.

Research limitations/implications

The paper reveals that researchers who compare word‐based educational systems with electronic, interactive sound‐and‐image‐based systems should use measures appropriate for the latter, rather than derived from the former.

Practical implications

The paper shows that educators should take interactive electronic game methods more seriously in thinking about and planning for the futures of universities and their curricula.

Originality/value

This paper provides a contribution to the growing emphasis on making learning interactive, engaging, effective, and fun.

Details

On the Horizon, vol. 13 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1074-8121

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 February 2004

Jim Dator

Although the mortgage sector of the banking industry in the USA has seen good times in the recent past, the futures are uncertain. This article considers the nature of futures…

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Abstract

Although the mortgage sector of the banking industry in the USA has seen good times in the recent past, the futures are uncertain. This article considers the nature of futures studies and applies futures analysis to the mortgage sector. The history of banking, and the USA, has been a struggle between three competing public philosophies: liberalism, populism, and progressivism. But the current Bush administration's pursuit of a New American Empire presents all of us, as well as banking, with a new and largely unanticipated future, the consequences of which are ominous.

Details

Foresight, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 September 2016

Olivia Bina and Andrea Ricci

Drawing on a EU-funded research project on urbanisation in China and Europe (URBACHINA), the purpose of this inquiry is to explore the potential of foresight – through visionary…

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing on a EU-funded research project on urbanisation in China and Europe (URBACHINA), the purpose of this inquiry is to explore the potential of foresight – through visionary scenarios and related participatory processes – in promoting learning and sustainable futures in China’s centrally planned context. Our research explores the use of backcasting, of Donella Meadows’ “levers” and Paul Raskin’s “proximate-ultimate drivers” and of archetypal worldviews to further our understanding of how we think about the future, and of the tension between transition scenarios and transformative, paradigmatic or deep change.

Design/methodology/approach

A review of recent foresight studies and literature provides an overview of the latest approaches: in particular the methods, scope, process, level of participation, themes discussed and wild cards considered. Building on this, the inquiry designs and implements a participatory, normative and qualitative scenario building to explore sustainable urban futures for China, adapting the elements of Joseph Voros’ basic foresight process to include a total of nine steps, with five workshops, two international surveys, an adapted backcasting step and internal consistency mechanisms.

Findings

The combination of a participatory iterative process with normative approaches to envisioning, helped question assumptions and deeply ingrained development models, as well as the narrow space for “alternatives” resulting from China’s centralised, top-down planning and decision-making. The experience confirms the power of scenario/storyline building in helping reflect and question strategic policy choices and enrich urban policy debates. The process successfully proposed a number of steps that ensured triangulation of the envisioning outcomes and additional learning also through backcasting. Finally, the research shows a clear link between the development of scenarios space, the debate on transition and transformative futures and archetypal worldviews, which were shown to be stable even after decades.

Originality/value

The URBACHINA approach to the specific challenge of sustainable urbanisation in China applies a strong normative component combined to more locally accepted exploratory methods and introduces a participatory approach to all key stages of scenario building. This represents an innovative contribution to the country’s foresight practice and the results help Chinese decision makers to reflect on the wider sustainability implications of their urban strategy. The inquiry deepens our understanding of the use of proximate and ultimate drivers of change and of the tension between transition and transformation pathways to our future.

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