Tomorrow's success is today's strategy.


Horizon scanning | Environmental Scanning: the centre for future studies

The Centre for Future Studies provides external scanning resources and expertise and also works with organisations to assist in building an in-house environmental scanning capability.

Horizon scanning is the core of effective futures work and long term thinking. Since strategy is about determining how an organisation positions itself in the external environment, understanding that environment in some depth is critical to achieving that objective. All our projects begin with an environmental scanning component.

Horizon scanning is the art of systematically exploring the external environment to:

  • better understand the nature and pace of change in that environment; and,
  • identify potential opportunities, challenges and likely future developments relevant to your organisation.

Through the scanning process, the organisation builds knowledge of the relevant trends in the external environment that are likely to have a significant impact on the way it does business in the future, and the implications of those trends on the organisation’s strategy today.

Scanning provides information to inform the development of flexible strategies that enable organisations to respond quickly to the changing environment rather than react to it. As one step in a broader strategic development process, scanning helps organisations to create their preferred future.

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