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					                           THINK.
                           CHANGE.
                           DO




Futures thinking and EfS
                 Education for sustainability is futures
                 education

             > Questioning current
               trends
             > Imagining preferable
               alternatives
             > Understanding
               competing worldviews
             > Building capacity for
               social foresight
                    Education for sustainability means developing
                       students‟ capacity for social foresight
 ISF, UTS




             See Slaughter, R. A. (2006). Pathways and Impediments to Social Foresight.
                 Futures in education

                   “Young people are passionately interested in their own
                    futures, and that of the society in which they live. They
                    universally „jump at the chance‟ to study something
                    with such intrinsic interest that also intersects with their
                    own life interests in so many ways…For teachers and
                    schools, on the other hand, teaching about futures can
                    either be deeply inspiring or profoundly threatening”.
                   “Foresight is a human capacity that allows human
                    beings to order their priorities, navigate a complex
                    „present‟ and, furthermore, actively deal with the „not
                    here‟ and the „not yet‟”.
 ISF, UTS




                         ~ Richard A Slaughter, 2004
             Gidley, JM, Bateman, D and Smith, C (2004), Futures in Education: Principles, practice and potential.
                EfS
              should
               equip
             students
                with
              futures
             concepts
             and tools

             Slaughter, R. A.
             (2006). Pathways
             and Impediments
             to Social
             Foresight.
 ISF, UTS
                 Futures concepts

                   > The future is not fixed – many futures are possible
                   > Probable futures
                      – Where are we heading?
                   > Possible futures
                      – Where could we go?
                   > Preferred futures
                      – Where do we want to go?
                   > Prospective futures
                      – What will we do to create a desired future?

                Each approach provides educational opportunities
 ISF, UTS




             See Gidley, JM, Bateman, D and Smith, C (2004), Futures in Education: Principles, practice and potential.
   Approach                        Probable                      Possible                     Preferred                    Prospective
   Type of work                    Predictive,                   Cultural –                   Critical – post-             Integral,
                                   quantitative,                 interpretive,                modernist,                   transformational,
                                   trend is destiny              utopian (many                ideological (an              empowering
                                   (one future)                  futures)                     „other‟ future)              (futuring)

   Methods                         Quantitative,                 Qualitative,                 Text analysis,               Integral,
                                   forecasting,                  dialogues,                   critique of                  visioning, action
                                   surveys, trend                collaborative,               media, cultural              planning, action
                                   scenarios                     creative visions             artifacts,                   research
                                                                                              visioning

   Goal                            Generalisation,               Opening                      Critical                     Empowerment,
                                   extrapolation                 alternative                  awareness,                   change,
                                                                 possibilities                deconstruction               transformation
   Learning                        Understanding                 Creativity and               Critical                     Learning through
   opportunity                     system                        interpersonal                thinking,                    doing
                                   dynamics                      skills                       awareness of
                                                                                              other values
 ISF, UTS




             After Gidley, JM, Bateman, D and Smith, C (2004), Futures in Education: Principles, practice and potential.
                Futures tools and methods: visioning

             > Creative, fun, imaginative process
                – Narratives / stories / scenarios
                – Visual arts (collage, drawing, film)
                – Performance
             > Creating a lived experience of
               what futures might feel like
             > Drawing out alternative
               worldviews
                – The future is a blank page
                – How you fill it reveals a lot about
                  your values and worldview

                Example: ISF used STEEP (society, technology,
              economy, environment, politics) to guide visioning on
 ISF, UTS




                 the future of Melbourne‟s wastewater system
                 Futures tools and methods: backcasting

                   > Forecasting extrapolates trends forward from the present
                   > Backcasting starts with a desirable future and works backwards
                      – Develop a normative vision of the future
                      – Identify feasible pathways towards that future
                      – Develop an action plan for what would need to happen and
                        when
                   > Can be an iterative process where desired future emerges from
                     social learning

                 Example: The Georgia Basin Futures Project in
               Canada used a participatory backcasting approach
               to identify pathways to desirable futures within the
                            Georgia Basin catchment.
 ISF, UTS




             Robinson, J (2003), Future subjunctive: backcasting as social learning, Futures, 35, pp.839-856.
                 Futures tools and methods: causal layered
                 analysis
   Layer                     Description                                         Questions

   The litany                The official public or media description            What might a current overdramatised newspaper
                             of an issue                                         headline about this issue look like?

   Systemic                  Social, technological, economic,                    How and why did the issue arise? Who is involved?
   causes                    environmental, political and historical             What is the source of the litany? Why was it
                             factors. Provides interpretation based              presented? Who is being quoted - what is their
                             on quantitative data, technical                     involvement? What are the underlying causes?
                             explanations and academic analysis.
   Discourse /               Deeper, unconsciously held ideological,             Who are the stakeholders? What values do they
   worldview                 worldview and discursive assumptions                have? Who usually talks and lobbies about this
                                                                                 issue? What do they stand to lose or gain? Who has
                                                                                 the most control over the issue?
   Myth /                    Unconscious, emotive dimensions of the              What is an image or phrase that encapsulates what
   metaphor                  issue.                                              has been uncovered so far? What work of fiction,
                                                                                 movie, poetry, art, etc. evokes an image of the issue
                                                                                 being discussed? Are there any myths that may
                                                                                 constrain thinking or acting in relation to this issue?
 ISF, UTS




             S. Inayatullah, Causal Layered Analysis: Poststructuralism as Method, Futures 30 (8) (1998) 815-829
             Serafino de Simone, 2004, Causal Layered Analysis: A Cookbook Approach, in: The Causal Layered Analysis Reader.
             Futures tools and methods: integral futures


                                                Ken Wilber, The Integral Vision

                                                Richard Slaughter, Futures
                                                Beyond Dystopia: Creating Social
                                                Foresight.

                                                Brown, B.C. & Riedy, C.J. 2006,
                                                'Use of the Integral Framework to
                                                Design Developmentally-
                                                Appropriate Sustainability
                                                Communications' in Filho, W.L
                                                (eds), Innovation, Education and
                                                Communication for Sustainable
                                                Development, Peter Lang
                                                Scientific Publishers, Frankfurt,
                                                Germany, pp. 661-687.
 ISF, UTS
             Barriers to futures in education

              > Critique of business as usual
                 – Potential for ideological conflicts
              > Overcoming simplistic media images of the future
                (the litany)
                 – Optimism about personal future
                 – Pessimism about global future
              > There is no „textbook‟ for the future
                 – Challenging work for teachers

             How might these barriers be overcome to develop
              the social foresight capacity we need to move
 ISF, UTS




                           towards sustainability?

				
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