Stockholm 2004
Planning the Future Search simulation
Future Scenarios
Common Ground
Action Planning
Conference Management
Future Search:
About Future Search
FS Consultants
Arranged by:
Ander & Lindstrom Partners
Future Search Network

What is Future Search?

Future Search is a planning meeting that enables a system to transform its capability for action very quickly. The meeting is task-focused. It brings together 60 to 80 people in one room or hundreds in parallel rooms.

Future search brings people from all walks of life into the same conversation - those with resources, expertise, formal authority and need. They meet for 16 hours spread across three days. People tell stories about their past, present and desired future. Through dialogue they discover their Common Ground. Only then do they make concrete action plans.

The meeting design comes from theories and principles tested in many cultures for the past 50 years. It relies on mutual learning among stakeholders as a catalyst for voluntary action and follow-up. People devise new forms of cooperation that continue for months or years.

Future searches have been run in every part of the world and sector of society.

Core principles of Future Search

  • Get the »whole system« in the room. Invite a significant cross-section of all parties with a stake in the outcome.
  • Explore the »whole elephant« before seeking to fix any part. Get everyone talking about the same world. Think globally, act locally.
  • Put Common Ground and future focus front and center while treating problems and conflicts as information, not action items.
  • Encourage self-management and responsibility for action by participants before, during, and after the future search.

Conditions for Success

  • Urge full attendance - Keep part-time participants to a minimum.
  • Meet under healthy conditions - This means airy rooms with windows, healthy snacks and meals, adequate breaks.
  • Work across three days (sleep twice) - People need »soak time« to take in everything that happens.
  • Ask for voluntary public commitments to specific next steps before people leave.

Future Search Applications

Stories from Around the World

Future search is used on every continent and in many different cultures. Neutral concepts like past, present, future, Common Ground and action provide a big empty vessel into which people, regardless of culture, pour their many realities.

You will find many stories on Future Search Network's website:

Applications in Sectors

Future searches affect every part of society - social, economic and technical. Future Search Network is an active participant in the following sectors and we have provided brief descriptions of our successes in each.

Copyright © Future Search Network 2001-2002. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © A&L Partners AB 2000-2004. All rights reserved.
A&L Partners AB, Drottninggatan 55, SE-111 21 Stockholm, Sweden
tel. +46 8 677 00 30, fax +46 8 20 77 09. Website by Portabla Media.
Wednesday, 15-May-2013 05:59:55 CEST