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The history of scenario planning is rich and varied. Throughout the ages people have tried to make decisions today by studying the possibilities of tomorrow. When that tomorrow was more predictable and less fraught with uncertainty, those possibilities had a good chance of being the right ones. Now, however, the only given constant in a world of complexity is change itself. In an environment where information technology is driving an information revolution, and where the rules can be rewritten with breathtaking speed, planning can seem more based on luck than foresight.
There are methods for coping with unpredictability. The Scenario planning techniques described in this book will help to think about uncertainty in a structured way. Based on Gill Ringland's previous book Scenario Planning: Managing for the Future, this updated and expanded version focuses specifically on scenarios in public policy. The use of scenarios to create a framework for a shared vision of the future, by promoting discussion and building consensus outside a business environment, is examined. Ringland also looks at the similarities between organizations which have used scenarios successfully - such as the importance of communication via storyline and image.
Scenarios in Public Policy and its companion, Scenario Planning in Business are both practical paperback books that each expand on specific areas of Scenario Planning. They will appeal to managers looking to learn about and apply a particular aspect of scenario planning.
Reviews of Gill Ringland's prevoius work:
Nobody can ignore the future. This book is a must-read for any manager aspiring to put scenarios into practice.
Arie de Geus, Former Director of Shell International Petroleum and author of 'The Living Company'
(Gill Ringland) offers us a mechanism by which to bring structure to information technology and other forms of complexity, offering us the vital ability to understand the dynamics of change.
Oliver Sparrow, Chatham House Forum
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