Futuring is my passion. I am fascinated about what the future might bring. Always looking around for leads about the future and open for new insights. I am futurist, trendwatchter and strategist at the The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies, a thinktank in the Netherlands.
My background is in Human factors psychology. I did my Masters at Leiden University and I did a PhD in Delft University at the faculty of Industrial design engineering. I have been involved in foresight studies since 2006. I am frequently asked as an expert for future studies in area of food, natural resources, health and governance. I am also a speaker and workshop facilitator on futures studies, trend presentations and the many topics that I blog about.
My contributions to Futuristablog represent my own personal opinion and is never a statement of the Ministry of Economic Affairs.
In future studies one of the ultimate results is becoming aware of things that were previously unknown to most people. Especially in horizon scans, like the current STT project in the Netherlands, we want to know what is beyond the horizon. What are the unknowns that are unknown to most … Continue reading →
Herman Wijffels, professor of sustainability and societal change at Utrecht University and one of the most authoritative economists in the Netherlands, presented his view on the transition towards the circular economy. New principles and a new way of working are the only way to get out economic crisis. Prosumers (consumers … Continue reading →
There is this great temptation that futurists always have to resist: “can you please say something about the future? Just tell us some of your insights of what the year 2050 might look like?” It could make you feel appreciated professionally, or even powerful as a futurist to give such … Continue reading →
McKinsey presented a comprehensive analysis of the most important disruptive technologies that are changing the world, right now and in the years to come. Mobile internet, automation of work, internet of things, cloud technology, advanced robotics,(near) autonomous vehicles, next generation genomics, energy storage, 3D printing, advanced materials, advanced oil and … Continue reading →
Over many centuries, attempts have been made to get food production out of the cities. Produce comes from the land and is transported into the cities. In most western cities, abattoirs have disappeared. Markets are still there, but no longer have a central role in our shopping. This image is … Continue reading →
One definition of resilience is “the ability to cope with shocks and keep functioning in a satisfying way”. Resilience is about the self organizing capacity of systems. This means the ability to bounce back after disaster, or the ability to transform if a bad stage has happened. Both of these … Continue reading →
The future is all about connectedness. Dave Gray made that point clearly in his recent book “The connected company“. Online and offline social networks are getting deeper engrained in society. People start to grasp new opportunities of connectedness every time. To keep in pace with connected customers and clients, organizations … Continue reading →
Futurists are talking about trend and developments all day long. They almost live the future (or multiple futures). Their job is to help stimulate strategic thinking about the future in organizations and people. The everyday reality is, that most people are busy with important business here and now. Things that … Continue reading →
One of the main criteria for scenarios about the future is that they are challenging. They also need to be relevant and plausible, but they should also trigger people’s thinking. That means, scenarios need to contain creative elements, creative storylines that initiate the conversation about what the future may look … Continue reading →
Adam Kahane, former head of Scenarios at Shell, and pioneer in transformative scenario planning, presents his experience and insight in this wonderful book about his approach of working with the future. The book is about changing the future in a cooperative effort. He gained his experience during the transition from … Continue reading →
Playing makes things real and brings an imaginary world alive. Children understand this intuitively. When they give you cup of tea in a play, the tea is real and you have to drink it. Although they know it is not the actual hot liquid they are dealing with. Playing is … Continue reading →
When we think about the future, oftentimes we see new technology, like robotics, that will solve most of our problems. What we don’t always think about, is whether people like this new technology in their lives and how they engage with things like robots. The movie the Robot & Frank … Continue reading →
At the heat of the horse meat crisis in Europe, UNEP published ‘Our nutrient world’, a report that looked closely at the massive impact of nutrient use by agriculture and especially meat production. The report proposed many actions to improve the management of nutrients in agriculture. But one recommendation received … Continue reading →
We know that the possibilities of our smart phones are virtually endless. One of the functions that we will see more and more are mobile payment services. Digital wallets are potentially everywhere. But would we, society as a whole, be willing to give up physical money completely? Google Wallet, Paypal, … Continue reading →
Our hyper-urbanised life of the 21th century will rely heavily on urban transportation. Individual lifestyles, flexible work rhythms and unconstrained leisure time activities all encourage transportation. On top of that, think of all the cargo that needs to enter the city for us to eat, drink, work in our offices … Continue reading →
“No serious futurist deals in predictions”. These are the famous words of Alvin Toffler in his seminal book Future Shock from 1971. Instead, future studies usually describe a number of plausible futures pointing at different directions for the world or society. Never predicting, just analyzing uncertainty and complexity. However, the … Continue reading →
We know robots for very long. They are regular characters in sci-fi movies, coming in all shapes and with many competencies. In those movies we have seen human relationships with good, evil or just emotively blank robots. Isaac Asimov was the pioneering author who showed us what living with robots … Continue reading →
Think back of your own college years, attending lectures with hundreds of other students in those steep lecture halls with harsh wooden chairs. Or think of the time you were with friends elsewhere while you should have been in those lecture halls. Or when you were doing all sorts of … Continue reading →
In her film DNA Dreams, documentary maker Bregtje van der Haak gave us a magnificent view into the world of young scientists eager to unravel the mysteries of our genome. She presented the dreams of genome researchers and their vision of the future. It all happens in China and on … Continue reading →
The permanent job contract is losing out. Over the last ten years there was a steady drop of people with a permanent job contract across the population and this trend will probably continue in the coming decade. A “job for life” seems even more “so last century”. People are much … Continue reading →