Futures consciousness

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This essay examines how futures consciousness varies in its cultural context. Indeed, for millions in the less developed countries the future is not something which enters their consciousness. It is argued that the elite in government and industry should become involved in the futures field, and that futurists must rise to the challenge of relating futures to the practical concerns and cultural backgrounds of a diversity of peoples. Bringing such relevance to futures is a major task for the future of futures research and studies.

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... Such research also provides the basis for empirically testing the effect of foresight on human cognition, i.e., evaluating mental models for alterations before and after interventions like future workshops or future-thinking activities. Furthermore, researchers should strive to investigate the antecedents for human construction of future imaginaries (Seth 1989). As age, education, political beliefs and spirituality seem plausibly to have impact on future perception, these connections need rigorous testing ere any conclusions can be drawn. ...
Among the most relevant megatrends of today’s business and society are the fastmoving world, the accelerating development of technology and increasing complexity. All these environmental conditions have impact on the way humans perceive their future and how they prepare for it today. An increasingly velocious future leaves people and organizations with constantly decreasing time for preparation and a growing degree of uncertainty while the present itself becomes more and more irrelevant (Huyssen 2000).
This paper explores the possibility that dominant accounts of the future in education privilege a primarily economic conception of education, and risk obscuring the role education has in shaping the future beliefs of society and in preserving the social structures that ensure access to learners’ future rights and opportunities. I consider how this may be enabled through representing the future as decontextualised, and suggest that educators concerned with social justice might benefit, when articulating possible futures, from paying attention to the territory in which narratives of possible futures are imagined to take place, recognising the material and social processes that will constitute those futures. These ‘located futures’ might better represent the concerns and interests of future learners.
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