Skip to main content

European Foresight Platform - supporting forward looking decision making

Article Category

Article available in the folowing languages:

Preparing today for a better tomorrow

A Coordination and Support Action project was set up with EU funding to consolidate the information and knowledge base on foresight, both in Europe and internationally. Reinforcing related actions under the framework programmes, the initiative aimed at creating a unique knowledge hub in order to facilitate European forward-looking activities.

Digital Economy

Such initiatives are increasingly being recognised as an important support mechanism for the introduction of new policy. With these exercises frequently being undertaken across a broad range of domains, there is a need to introduce new requirements that will reinforce related developments. For example, a European foresight network needs to interconnect information on other existing networks in the area. The 'European foresight platform - supporting forward looking decision making' (EFP) built on the pioneering work of Sixth Framework Programme (FP6) projects 'European foresight monitoring network' (EFMN) and 'Support to mutual learning between foresight managers, practitioners, users and stakeholders of policy-making organisations in Europe' (FOR-LEARN). Team members set a number of objectives relevant to capitalising on the potential gains of integrating forward-looking elements in various European Research Area (ERA) networks and technology platforms (TPs). These included raising awareness of foresight and other forward-looking activities (FLAs) as strategic policy instruments, providing and updating a knowledge-sharing platform for practitioners and newcomers, and providing support to policymakers and other stakeholders interested in forward-looking studies. Aiming to ensure the systematic use and maximum benefit of foresight expertise as well as to identify and mobilise relevant actors for EU-wide network and capacity building, EFP efforts resulted in a number of considerable achievements. Workshops on specific interest issues like transport or cultural heritage served to highlight the value of FLAs to policymakers, and a robust model of the value of FLAs for strategic policymaking. Major advances were made in FLA mapping, with exciting prospects being noted for further improvements and application of this mapping approach, and a FLAs mapping environment was produced. This is a multipurpose platform aiming to monitor, analyse and map FLAs in Europe and the world. Other project deliverables include foresight briefs, produced as support for community building and policy information, and a good practice manual encompassing the development of an online foresight guide and its integration in the EFP platform. The project website highlights the core EFP infrastructure, with a multitude of features underscoring the premise of the project and its vision. These and other important achievements will extend the network activities of EFP towards an enhanced environment for the practice of FLAs and the ability to adapt to the changing contexts in which foresight activities take place. Project activities and results continue to reach a wider audience through newsletters, online media and networking events.

Discover other articles in the same domain of application