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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2006

Mika Aaltonen and T. Irene Sanders

The purpose of this research paper is to review and contrast traditional foresight methods through the lens of one of the key insights about complex adaptive systems

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research paper is to review and contrast traditional foresight methods through the lens of one of the key insights about complex adaptive systems – namely, a system's sensitive dependence on initial conditions.

Design/methodology/approach

Foresight methods have often been criticized about their linear way of looking at the future. Insights from complex adaptive systems research, however, provide a new theory‐driven approach for developing real foresight methods as opposed to traditional forecasting methods based primarily on linear extrapolation. This serves as a starting point for the re‐analysis and re‐classification of the foresight methods, presented profoundly in the American Council for the United Nation's University Millennium Project's Futures Research Methodology – V2.0.

Findings

The findings of the analysis show which foresight methods actually present the future as a continuation of the present, and which instead are able to identify a system's new and emerging initial conditions; and what kind of possible understanding of the system the methods offer to the user.

Research limitations/implications

This research paper provides a new perspective to reopen the discussion about the necessary qualities of foresight methods. This paper argues that instead of trying to forecast the future the foresight methods should help us to see and influence the future as it is emerging.

Practical implications

Discussion and guidelines for methodological work and an introduction of complex systems concept‐tools map, a new set of methods and the way how it could be used together with Futures Research Methodology – V2.0 represent vast implications for organizations' foresight practices.

Originality/value

The origins of novelty are two: the complex adaptive systems perspective to discuss foresight methods, and the presentation of the new set of methods to support and complement Futures Research Methodology – V2.0.

Details

Foresight, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 July 2007

Mika Aaltonen

This article seeks to emphasize the importance of two elements; the nature of the strategic landscape and time, which are often neglected in foresight and strategic

Abstract

Purpose

This article seeks to emphasize the importance of two elements; the nature of the strategic landscape and time, which are often neglected in foresight and strategic management by putting them in a form that makes them the basis for twenty‐first century strategic management.

Design/methodology/approach

The multi‐ontology approach states that the properties of strategic landscapes vary from linear to complex and even to disruptive, and that the dynamics of action in each of them is different. Consequently, when analyzing strategic landscapes, variations between them should be distinguished and different tools and methods applied accordingly.

Findings

An added sensitivity to socially and situationally constructed worlds allows for new tactical and strategic possibilities.

Research limitations/implications

This article is not a concluding chapter, rather an opening one that points the way for a number of necessary further developments.

Practical implications

The article suggests that more contextually constructed approaches with respect to strategic landscapes and time are required; and that when applied they will lead to more appropriate and more effective outcomes in both sense‐making and decision‐making.

Originality/value

The article's concept of chronotope space enables us to dissect the complex tradeoffs between the properties of strategic landscape and the time frame at stake.

Details

Foresight, vol. 9 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 January 2015

Mika Immonen, Jyri Vilko, Jouni Koivuniemi and Kaisu Laasonen

The purpose of this paper is to focus on the availability and demanded locations of health care services in a rural context. The authors analyse subjective experiences…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to focus on the availability and demanded locations of health care services in a rural context. The authors analyse subjective experiences because mobility and other individual factors influence the availability of public services.

Design/methodology/approach

Results from a mail survey in southeastern Finland are presented. Data collection was conducted using a random sample of 3,000 people from age 60 to 90 years. A total of 1,121 valid responses were received.

Findings

The acceptable distance to service sites depends on learned behaviour where differences exist between suburban and rural residents. The authors found that service networks can be sparser in rural areas if the service sites are located in the daily activity space of the residents and travel burdens caused by distance and time are adequately solved. However, continuous downscaling of the provision may lead to the loss of health benefits which is harmful for individuals and expensive for society.

Research limitations/implications

Further research should assess a broader variety of residential areas from the perspective of service availability. The results presented do not enable a direct comparison of the service availability between cities and sparsely populated rural areas.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to the debate on access barriers to public service in rural regions. The question of availability of public services is topical because increasing overall demand requires urgent productivity improvements in public services. Currently this is solved by centralisation to search economies of scale.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 28 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 June 1952

JOAN PICKFORD

High on the roof of the world, with its crest above the Arctic Circle, and nearly 800 miles of Russian frontier flanking it on the east, lies little Finland, land of…

Abstract

High on the roof of the world, with its crest above the Arctic Circle, and nearly 800 miles of Russian frontier flanking it on the east, lies little Finland, land of 65,000 lakes and over 100,000 square miles of forest. Half its population is still employed in agriculture, but industrialisation has been recent and rapid, and with it has come the spread of education, transforming a peasant people into a completely literate one. So stiff now are the high school final examinations that those who pass them are automatically eligible for admission to the universities; and the University of Helsinki, with its enrolment of 10,000 students, is the greatest in Northern Europe.

Details

Library Review, vol. 13 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

Article
Publication date: 19 June 2020

Jutta Viinikainen, Petri Böckerman, Marko Elovainio, Christian Hakulinen, Mirka Hintsanen, Mika Kähönen, Jaakko Pehkonen, Laura Pulkki-Råback, Olli Raitakari and Liisa Keltikangas-Järvinen

A prominent labour market feature in recent decades has been the increase in abstract and service jobs, while the demand for routine work has declined. This article…

Abstract

Purpose

A prominent labour market feature in recent decades has been the increase in abstract and service jobs, while the demand for routine work has declined. This article examines whether the components of Type A behaviour predict workers' selection into non-routine abstract, non-routine service and routine jobs.

Design/methodology/approach

Building on the work by Barrick et al. (2013), this article first presents how the theory of purposeful work behaviour can be used to explain how individuals with different levels of Type A components sort into abstract, service and routine jobs. Then, using longitudinal data, it examines whether the components of Type A behaviour predict occupational sorting. Estimations were performed based on the linear regression method.

Findings

The results show that the Type A dimension “leadership” was associated with a higher level of abstract and service job tasks in occupation. High eagerness-energy and responsibility were also positively linked with occupation's level of abstract tasks. These results suggest that workers sort into jobs that allow them to pursue higher-order implicit goals.

Originality/value

Job market polarisation towards low-routine jobs has had a pervasive influence on the labour market during the past few decades. Based on high-quality data that combine prime working-age register information on occupational attainment with information about personality characteristics, the findings contribute to our knowledge of how personality characteristics contribute to occupational sorting in terms of this important job aspect.

Details

Employee Relations: The International Journal, vol. 42 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 August 2018

Simo Mannila and Galina Eremicheva

The purpose of this paper is to describe some risks and risk-taking when launching and running business in Russia during the socio-economic transformation. The risks are…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe some risks and risk-taking when launching and running business in Russia during the socio-economic transformation. The risks are related to informal economy.

Design/methodology/approach

The research material consists of 11 thematic interviews of families, who launched and ran a business during the turn of the millennium and follow-up interviews. The interviews were extracted from a larger material of 100 interviews and 40 follow-ups focusing on household coping in Russian socio-economic transformation.

Findings

The paper focusses on risky shuttle trade as well as crime-related risks of business, as poignant illustrations of problems of entrepreneurship linked with informal economy. The risks are seen as social facts, objective or constructed, in some cases pointing out also how people speak about them. The testimonial stories of business show an individual or family focus on the risks, without major concern for legitimacy of action, albeit a need for distinction toward other corresponding risk-takers.

Research limitations/implications

The findings illustrate important aspects of informal economy in Russia, but they cannot be generalized. It would be most useful to carry out qualitative studies of small business to assess perception and construction of risks and coping with them, capturing the views of entrepreneurs themselves.

Originality/value

There is rather little micro-level information concerning the risks or uncertainty when launching and running business in the Russian Federation. Qualitative data enable deeper understanding of sensitive issues. The paper wants to introduce the concept of risk into the social research of informal economy.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 38 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

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