How do we see into the future?
The history of human development has never seen the rates of change we are experiencing today. Rapid technological innovation is transforming societies, cultures and economies seemingly overnight. Add in a pandemic and increasing climate instability and certainty about the future is something few of us are willing to bet on.
One of our favorite mantras around B+H are the prophetic words of American Canadian writer William Gibson,
“The future is already here; it’s just not very evenly distributed.”
For us this is a reminder that the clues to the future are all around for those of us curious enough to look. If we gather enough of these puzzle pieces, we can begin to identify patterns and, even better, possibilities at the points where they converge and convene.
In her bestseller, The Signals are Talking, futurist Amy Webb encourages all to take a “trip to the fringes of science, technology, design, and society to where unusual experimentation is taking place. For it’s at the fringe that all trends are born.”
One of the tools we use in our Advance Strategy practice is the PRECOG deck. An ever evolving collection of products, thought experiments, ideas, concepts, and movements that are wild, crazy, fun and unimaginable - and happening right now, in every sector, in countries across the world.
The term PRECOG is our version of the traditional STEEP (Society, Technology, Environment, Economy, Politics) framework used in strategic planning. PRECOG (short for precognition) comes from the Latin prae-, “before” and cognitio, “acquiring knowledge). Also referred to as prescience, future vision, or future sight, precognition is a claimed psychic ability to see events in the future.
Populace (demographics, social values, ethnographies)
Resiliency (natural, virtual + built environments)
Exchange (economies, markets)
Culture (arts, thoughts, ideas, perspectives that capture the Zeitgeist)
O/S (technology, science, invention)
Governance (politics, geography, ethics, mind)
We’re not psychic. We simply believe in analyzing quantitative and qualitative data to discover, explore, map, and create our future.
We’re kicking off the New Year with a hopeful signal from each of our PRECOG sectors that we have much to be optimistic about in 2021.
Throughout the year we’ll regularly share our findings and insights, and we invite all of you to join us on our trip to the fringe.