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THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE

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					                       Report on a Seminar held at the Royal Society of Edinburgh,
                                           3rd February 1999

                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
Introduction
This seminar was held as a prelude to the second Foresight round which is scheduled to commence in April
1999. It brought together a cross-section of organisations and individuals who are involved in Foresight at
various levels. The intent is to continue the constructive response of the Scottish community to the UK-wide
Foresight initiative, and to ensure that any unique Scottish dimensions are identified and addressed by relevant
groups. The seminar was organised by the Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE) and supported by the Scottish Office
Industry and Education Department (SOEID), Scottish Enterprise (SE) and the Scottish Higher Education Funding
Council (SHEFC).
The format of the seminar was a series of presentation by leading representatives of key sectors followed by a
panel discussion. In parallel, SHEFC organised a poster session at which researchers illustrated progress in
selected SHEFC-funded Research Development Grant projects. These projects have a strong Foresight focus.
Professor Malcolm Jeeves CBE, RSE President, chaired the main seminar, and Ed Weeple, Under Secretary, SOEID,
moderated the panel discussion. The keynote talk was given by Lord Macdonald of Tradeston, Minister for
Business and Industry. Steven Spivey, Director of Foresight, OST gave an overview of the plans for the next
Foresight round. Other aspects were addressed by: Professor Jeeves; Professor John Sizer CBE, Chief Executive of
SHEFC; Ray Macfarlane, Managing Director of SE; and Dr George Bennett, CBE, former Vice-President of
Motorola, East Kilbride.
The first part of this report gives the text (or charts) of the talks, followed by a brief summary of the panel
discussion. The second part is a brochure containing the information presented during the poster session.
Dr Donald J Barclay                                         Dr Marc Rands
Technology Foresight Adviser, RSE                           Research Officer, RSE


Introduction by RSE President, Professor Malcolm Jeeves CBE
A warm welcome to the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
The Royal Society of Edinburgh, with the support of Scottish Enterprise, SHEFC, and the Scottish Office, is
pleased to be presenting this symposium on a Scottish perspective on Foresight.
The Royal Society of Edinburgh is Scotland’s National Academy of Science and Letters. Founded in 1783, it was
granted a Royal Charter for “the Advancement of Learning and Useful Knowledge”. It is in relation to the
advancement of useful knowledge that the RSE seeks to see Scotland’s strong research base used to good
effect: Foresight plays an important role in that process.
Among the most important debates in recent years have been the issues of links between science and wealth
creation, and between academia and industry. The RSE is at the forefront of the debate in Scotland and the UK.
The Society is committed to promoting the economic well being of Scotland by encouraging closer links between
the country's research base and its commercial sector. In serving these ends, the Society provides a neutral forum
where bodies with differing views and interests can come together and develop a broad-based approach.
One of the key ways the Society has sought to foster these links has been though its support of the UK
Government’s Foresight programmes and by undertaking work leading to Technology Ventures, a Scottish
strategy aimed at increasing the volume of Scottish-based businesses exploiting Scotland’s world class Science
base. The RSE has been closely involved with Foresight since its inception, working closely with the Office of
Science and Technology and the Scottish Office. Reflecting this, the Scottish launch of the first phase took place
at the RSE, and the RSE contributed to the Scottish response to Foresight I, and hosted a Foresight meeting on
the release of the Foresight Panel and Steering Group reports.
We have subsequently continued to support many Foresight initiatives and have organised, in association with
Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Higher Education Funding Council, a very successful series of Foresight
Seminars during which senior executives of multinational companies share their corporate Foresight with
representatives of the Scottish science base. Sectors and industries covered by these seminars is shown in the
table below.
In support of these activities, we have established a Ventures and Foresight Working Party, and with the support
of the Scottish Office Education and Industry Department, we award postdoctoral Research Fellowships, which
include Foresight priority areas in the criteria for selection.
The Society recognises that Foresight should continue to be a UK strategy. While there are, as we will see today,
distinctive Scottish aspects, it is important for the international standing of the Scottish science base that it
continues to operate within a UK and European framework. This is particularly the case now with a Scottish


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                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
Parliament in prospect. To identify the implications of devolution for Science and Technology, a study is being
undertaken on this jointly by the RSE and the Royal Society of London.
For this next round of Foresight, the RSE has continued to play its part. We contributed evidence and comment
to the consultation process led by the OST, and proposed and organised this Foresight Symposium today, in
collaboration with SHEFC, SE and the Scottish Office. We are pleased to see that the Blueprint incorporates a
number of points commented on by the Society:

•    The importance of including young people
•    The maintenance of a sectoral panel structure
•    That sectoral panels and thematic panels should be complementary activities
Today’s event will outline what has been achieved and what can be achieved and, in light of the recent launch
of the blueprint for Foresight II, will discuss how best to involve the Scottish community in the continuing
Foresight process.
       RSE Foresight Seminars
       Sector                    Foresight area              Industrial overview        University
                                                                                        overview
       1997-1998
       Semiconductors            ITEC                        Motorola                   Dundee
       Oil and Gas               Energy                      Schlumberger               Heriot Watt
       Pharmaceuticals           Healthcare                  Smith Kline Beecham        Dundee
       Optoelectronics           ITEC                        Bookham Technology         St Andrews
       Software                  ITEC                        IBM                        Glasgow
       Chemicals                 Chemicals                   BP Chemicals               Edinburgh

       Feb. 1999
       Nanotechnology            ITEC                        Smiths Industries          Glasgow




    FORESIGHT - THE KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY. SCOTTISH BUSINESS, AND THE SCOTTISH PARLIAMENT,
                LORD MACDONALD, SCOTTISH MINISTER FOR BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY.
Introduction
Thank you Professor Jeeves for that kind introduction.
Can I also take this opportunity to thank the Royal Society of Edinburgh for hosting this event - although I do
recognise that all the members of the Foresight Forum - including CBI (Scotland) and COSHEP - have played their
part in making it happen.
I’d also like to thank Steven Spivey for coming up from London to tell us more about the UK-wide structure of
the next round of Foresight, and the very latest developments. I am disappointed that I missed your presentation
Steven, but I’m delighted that you were able to announce that the new Food Chain and Crops for Industry Panel
will be Chaired by Dierdre Hutton, and that Jim Stretton will Chair the Ageing Population Panel.
And I’d like to thank my fellow speakers - and all of you - for coming along today. Your willingness to give your
valuable time is a very clear signal of the value of Foresight up to now, and the great potential of the next round.
Foresight is of course the central theme of what I’m going to say in the next 15 minutes or so. It is –and here
I’m quoting from the Blueprint document – about
•    anticipating the future
•    identifying potential needs, threats and opportunities
•    and encouraging people and organisations to act now to meet future challenges and take advantage of
     future opportunities.
Today I intend to focus on 4 specific aspects. But first, let me stress that I recognise that Foresight is about
partnership, that the Scottish research community has an important role, and that so far they have probably
been more fully involved than business. If Helen Liddell were here she would deliver a different sort of speech.
We both want to stimulate wider Scottish participation in Foresight, but I particularly want to influence business.
And so today I’ll talk about issues which relate to my interest in Foresight as Scottish Minister for Business and
Industry.

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                 THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
They are:
        •    how Foresight fits into the Government’s over-arching strategy for developing Business
             Competitiveness;
        •    how Foresight supports business;
        •    the implications of devolution; and
        •    how we can work together - in partnership - to maximise the benefits - for individuals, for
             companies and for Scotland as a whole.
Foresight and Business Competitiveness
 A few weeks ago, at a meeting of the Scottish Grand Committee, I received broad cross-party support for the
new Scottish Enterprise strategy. I’m sure Ray Macfarlane will cover this in detail later this morning. So I’ll simply
highlight some of the key points to demonstrate that Foresight fits into the Government’s over-arching strategy
for developing Business Competitiveness:
•   The vision is a Scotland powered by imaginative, innovative, far-sighted organisations. A Scotland which is
    competitive in the world economy.
•   The strategy is to counter our weaknesses - such as too few business start ups, and too little business
    investment in research and development - and play to our strengths – including world class scientific
    research and high numbers of graduates.
•   And SE will do that by working with a wide range of partners, on a large number of initiatives to encourage
    innovative new companies, entrepreneurs and investors.
It is to the credit of Scottish Enterprise that its new strategy anticipated many of the recommendations of the
White Paper on Competitiveness entitled ‘Building the Knowledge Driven Economy’. In essence both are about
Government, business and academia working together to develop a world class infrastructure and the
increasingly skilled and educated workforce, required in the knowledge driven economy of the future.
The relationship between Foresight and initiatives such as University Challenge, Science Enterprise Challenge and
our existing Technology Ventures Initiative, to which we owe a lot to the Royal Society, is obvious. Taken
together, these initiatives represent a coherent package of short, medium and long term measures designed to
exploit the science base and develop the Knowledge Economy. This is an opportunity which the Cluster Strategy
aims to capitalise on.
Foresight and business
I realise that, in terms of the group of people gathered here today, I may be preaching to the converted. I hope
therefore that my former media colleagues will convey this message further afield.
Some people still do not realise that a knowledge driven economy affects them: they think it is only about new
creative industries and high-tech business. They think it is not relevant to traditional manufacturing and services.
Some people say the same about Foresight. I believe that to be a fundamental misunderstanding.
Businesses of all types, big and small, from food processing to engineering, from retailing to banking, need to
marshal their knowledge, skills and creativity to improve their products and services and raise their productivity.
The knowledge driven economy is not simply about strengthening the science base and raising the education
and skill levels of the workforce. These objectives are important - and central to Government policy. But
success in the knowledge driven economy requires a shift in the business mindset: greater recognition of the
value of know-how and its commercial potential; eagerness to keep on learning at all levels in a business; and
flair in spotting new customer needs and fresh business opportunities.
Does that sound familiar? It should. It sums up some of the key elements of, for example, the White Paper
‘Building the Knowledge Driven Economy’, the CBI’s “Fit for the future” programme, and Foresight.
As a businessman myself, I know most big companies undertake some strategic planning under their own steam.
I know too that SMEs tend not to – and that they are not interested in policy documents, task forces and so-
called academic strategies. I understand, and I recognise the pressures. You want something tangible that helps
your business. You want value-added.
Let me tell you what Foresight can deliver if you get involved:
•   real, relevant, practical ideas on what is going to happen in your sector;
•   access to experts in their field who can help you stay ahead of the game;
•   access to contacts leading to new markets, and opportunities to improve your products;
•   information about your customers’ priorities – allowing you to gain advantage by offering them a solution to
    their problems, ideally before they have identified them themselves; and

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                 THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
•   a process to help you think about the future of your business and identify future threats and opportunities.
And if you want something with £ signs attached, let me remind you of the poster displays outside, and invite
John Sizer to tell you about the millions of pounds the Funding Council is investing in Foresight each year. The
Scottish Higher Education Funding Council published the first Foresight Action Plan, and has since 1996 been
investing in research infrastructure which is relevant to the needs of Scottish business. Yes, the money goes to
Scottish Universities - but the business benefits are there for you to exploit.
In short, Foresight is a tool for all businesses, large or small. It helps them to find out what their future might
hold; what they should be doing about it; and what support is available. Is that a package any business can
afford to turn away from? Is that really an unattractive investment?
The implications of devolution
I’d like to turn now to the imminent prospect of the Scottish Parliament. It has been much on my mind of late
because – like everyone else in Scotland – it will have a significant impact on my future. And it has been on my
mind because I’m currently in a position to prepare the way.
That’s why, in recent weeks, I have:
•   published the SE strategy;
•   set up a Knowledge Economy Taskforce, to find solutions to 4 key policy challenges before 31 March; and
•   launched the Pathfinders initiative, which gives key industrial and business sectors the opportunity to set-out
     their priorities for action by the new Parliament.
In doing so I make no assumptions about the Parliament’s priorities. But I think that there is, at the very least, a
body of evidence to suggest that an imperative for the incoming Scottish Executive will be to act quickly and
decisively to help create a modern Scotland. A Scotland that that can compete effectively in the knowledge-
driven global economy of the 21st century.
And I think it is equally obvious that, while Foresight will remain a UK-wide initiative, there are potential benefits
- for Scotland as whole, and at a more local level too – in using the Foresight process to guide our thinking
about the future. And using outputs from Foresight and data from the Knowledge Pool to inform that process
and ensure that our vision of Scotland’s future – and our plans for realising it - are robust and well-focused.
That being the case it is reasonable to expect that both the Parliament and the Executive will both
•   recognise that there has always been a distinctive Scottish element to Foresight activity,
•   and wish to enhance this in some way.
I believe therefore that this is another area where we can create a framework for future action, a process which
the Parliament and others can develop to in due course. I’m keen to hear your view on all of this. Creative
partnership has been a major part of the preparations for the Parliament. It has worked well, and it’s very much
a part of the Foresight ethos too.
Let me briefly outline what such a framework might include, and before lunch we can perhaps discuss how to
take it forward.
Maximising the benefits to Scotland
The framework we need will have to be flexible enough to accommodate a range of influences:
•   any Scottish activity must integrate with the pattern and timing of the main UK programme; and draw on
    UK resources too;
• any Scottish activity must integrate with existing or future Scottish initiatives which have a different time-
    frame, but common objectives;
• and we should focus on those areas where there is a distinctive Scottish dimension, and where we can
    clearly add-value.
Taking together these factors suggest that one possible approach might be to decide on the key sectors for
Scotland – the Clusters Strategy might help with that - and organise a series of much more focused workshops
over the next 18 months or so. Workshops driven by the needs of Scottish business and Scotland’s people.
Workshops which address sectoral issues, yet also promote a flow of ideas across sectors.
Some might be organised by SE or SHEFC, some by the RSE, many by The Scottish Office and the DTI. These
must leave ‘gaps’ for panel developments, activity by individual organisations, and significantly, input by
members of the Scottish Parliament.
The common thread should be that they are not talking-shops. We should not lose sight of our objectives. We
want to contribute appropriately to Foresight because that should maximise the potential benefits to Scotland


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                 THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
from Foresight. We want to be able to move smoothly from analysis and discussion to implementation, knowing
what the Scottish dimension of Foresight involves and who will take it forward.
That is why we need Action Plans. SHEFC already have one, and will I imagine be revising it. SE might develop
one too – and Local Enterprise Companies, Trade Associations and other industry organisations. Indeed every
Scottish business involved in the process should aim to create or alter its forward plans to take account of
Foresight findings.
We particularly need action plans emerging from every workshop or sectoral series.
And we need an opportunity to look at them collectively, to develop a Foresight Action Plan for Scotland.
As I said earlier, I would welcome your views on how we should take this forward. How do we ensure that we
turn a process into products? How can we work together - in partnership - to maximise the benefits - for
individuals, for companies and for Scotland as a whole?
I hope we can establish a clear consensus today. A will to create that framework.
I am confident we will achieve that, and, I’d like to end now by demonstrating my commitment to that broad
agenda. So I am pleased to announce that through the Scottish Foresight Forum the Scottish Office will spend
£75,000 over the next two years, pump-priming initial activity. Basically this is seedcorn funding:
•   to put in place the framework on which the Scottish Parliament can build;
•   to fund workshops and action plans;
•   to identify ways that Scottish business, Scottish academics and Scottish Government can work together to
    enhance wealth creation in the knowledge economy;
•   and to enable a further conference to be held in November 2000, which will finalise a Foresight Action Plan
    for Scotland.
Thank you.


THE BLUE PRINT FOR THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT, DIRECTOR OF FORESIGHT, OST, STEPHEN
SPIVEY
Good morning. I welcome this opportunity to contribute to Foresight in Scotland.
In the course of my career in DTI I have found myself dealing regularly with Scotland, Scots and the Scottish
Office. I’ve enjoyed all three. And I am glad to say that my 2½ years as Foresight Director has very much
helped to confirm that view. I am grateful for the positive support we have received in that time, in particular
from John Sizer as a member of our Steering Group, from the Society and from Scottish Office colleagues. I
hope that this event will stimulate an even stronger Scottish contribution to the next round.
My role in the proceedings is to talk about the history of UK Foresight to date and about the structure of, and
our objectives for, the next round. The history lesson will be very brief but I hope will serve to put our plans for
the next round into context.
Foresight 1994-99
The Foresight Programme was launched in the 1993 White paper on Science, Engineering and Technology under
the guiding hand of the then Chief Scientific Adviser, Sir William Stewart.
The title of the White Paper ‘Realising our Potential’ reflected its two basic themes:
•   that UK business has failed to take full advantage of the excellence of UK science; and
•   that scientific excellence could be better targeted in ways which enhance both wealth creation and quality
    of life.
Foresight addresses both these themes. It operates at three different levels.
At one level it is about identifying market drivers, threats and opportunities beyond normal commercial time
horizons and the technology and other priorities relating to them so as to inform policy and spending decisions
in both the public and the private sector.
At another it’s about promoting dialogue and developing enduring collaborative networks not jut between
industry, the science base and government but between firms in the same sector and across sectoral disciplinary
and functional boundaries.
At another, it is about promoting a culture of forward thinking which recognises that in the words of John
Kennedy ‘those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future’. And that whilst nobody

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                 THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
can systematically predict the future the key to competitive advantage, and, even more basic, the survival of any
organisation is to be alive to what might happen and use that knowledge to make things happen to its
advantage.
In short, it’s about building bridges between science and business; getting people who understand the
possibilities opened up by advances in Science and Technology to communicate effectively with people who
understand markets and consumer needs and requirements; and harnessing this endeavour on a collective
national basis to the common cause of sustaining national long term competitive advantage and enhancing
quality of life. And it’s an undertaking in which establishing Foresight as a process applicable to any
organisation - large or small, public sector or private sector, sectoral, regional or national - is just as important as
the outputs produced.
Progress To Date, Weaknesses and Achievements
These are supremely ambitious objectives which it is going to take a long time to achieve. But progress is being
made.
The aim of using Foresight as a vehicle for developing collaborative networks is being achieved. There are a wide
range of instances - collaborative projects involving large firms, SMEs and universities; events bringing together
people who hadn’t previously seen themselves as having interests in common and forging shared agendas; cross
cutting projects bringing together people from different sectors and disciplines - a whole range of instances
where Foresight has set in motion, or caused something to happen which might not otherwise have happened.
Foresight is having an impact on decision making in the public sector - visible at UK level in the direction of
spending under/wider collaborative research programmes such as LINK, Foresight Challenge and most recently
the Foresight LINK Awards and in Research Council programmes. But visible also increasingly not just in terms of
Panels contributing to the development of policy, e.g. on transport and renewable energies, but in policy makers
incorporating Foresight into their programmes - a particular example of this is the requirement which has just
been placed on National Training Organisations - which, of course, have a UK remit to apply Foresight principles
to their individual planning processes. I know that their Scottish representative body is alive to that challenge,
and eager to do something distinctively Scottish.
And we are progressively seeing a greater level of engagement from business, generated by a recognition that
Panels are producing outputs relevant to business. That the Foresight process is increasingly part of corporate
best practice and something even small companies can do for themselves. And by case studies showing what
Foresight findings and the application of Foresight thinking have enabled companies, large and small, to do for
themselves.
But at the same time, we are very conscious of the shortcomings of the Programme to date
•   the fact that whilst the 16 sectoral Panels have worked well, the feedback we have received shows clearly
    that the narrow sectoral focus has limited the value of the exercise for many firms
•   the fact that whilst we have been fortunate to have had the support of - and still have the support of - an
    extraordinary rich and diverse collection of panel members, Panels have been drawn from a relatively narrow
    cross section of business, academia and Government
•   the fact that once Panels were appointed, there was limited scope for outsiders to get involved and help to
    shape their outputs
•   the fact that in terms of the Programme as a whole there has been not too much technology but too little
    consideration of social and other key drivers shaping future market requirements and opportunities
•   and the fact that although levels of awareness and participation are increasing, overall levels of
    understanding and awareness about Foresight are still relatively low.
The Next Round
The next round is about addressing these issues, applying lessons learned from experience here and overseas and
from the extensive consultation exercise we carried out last year and building on what has been achieved to
date.
It’s about developing new visions and making more effective use of material we’ve already got. About making
Foresight more effective by
•   broadening the basis of participation
•   achieving better quality outputs
•   improving their relevance to decision makers, whether in the public or the private sector and whether their
    interest is wealth creation or quality of life (concepts which for us are two sides of one coin)
•   turning findings into action and demonstrating to stakeholders that there is value in getting involved



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•   and taking forward the long term objective of cultural change by encouraging a much wider range of
    Foresight activity than has been the case to date.
It is inevitable on these occasions that one focuses on what’s new but in outlining to you how we see the next
round working I want to start by emphasising how much remains the same. Because the next round is at least
as much about continuity as about change.
Sectoral Panels, with an expected 5 year life cycle, remain at the heart of the process. Some, like Chemicals and
Materials are unchanged and will take forward the agenda of the current Panels. Others are more broadly
focused, reflecting the strong feedback we received from last year’s consultation exercise that broader focus
would add value for potential stakeholders. But can be expected - will certainly be encouraged - to continue,
and build on, relevant work of their predecessors.
As an example, the Built Environment and Transport Panel provides a platform which has not been available to
date for addressing the spectrum of issues relating to urban development and regeneration, infrastructure
planning and integrated transport and for bringing in organisations which have relevant knowledge and
expertise to offer but, for whatever reason, feel that the existing sectoral panels have not given them a locus to
contribute.
But at the same time, the current Construction Panel will remain in being, operating under the wing of the
Construction Industry Board and both contributing to the work of the BET and other relevant panels and acting
as a channel of communication between them and the construction sector. We hope that the Marine Panel,
which remains in existence until September, will similarly continue to operate within the sector and on a basis
which ensures that marine consideration s are integrated fully into the work of the OST managed panels. And
that this process of embedding Foresight panels at sectoral level, outside the OST managed Programme, will
extend to other sectors such as Engineering and Electronics which have never had narrowly focused OST Panels
of their own.
What is new is that we are setting up thematic panels addressing cross-cutting social and economic issues which
will shape future markets. And requiring all Panels to consider two more themes, education skills and training
and sustainable development, which we see as fundamental to their work and to realising any meaningful vision
of the future.
We are setting up 3 thematic panels
•   one concerned with the impact of the changing age structure of the population on future markets
•   another concerned with the implications of developments in technology for both the incidence of crime and
    for preventing and reducing it
•   the third focused on the nature of manufacturing in 2020 and the strategies which the UK needs to adopt
    to ensure that its manufacturing sector remains competitive.
•   Assuming they work well, we will move on next year to address other themes.
We see the thematic Panels as potentially the most exciting and visionary part of the exercise, throwing out
challenges to the sectoral Panels and the outside world and providing a platform for the interaction between
different sectors and disciplines which can help to stimulate real innovation and new thinking in business and
Government.
But interaction between Panels and between them and outside participants is something we shall be
encouraging across the piece. Over the last two years we have put a lot of effort into generating cross panel
activity with encouraging results. We want that process to continue. For the same reason, we want to ensure
that expertise in IT, materials and other key enabling technologies is available to all panels from the outset.
We are currently in the process of putting Panels together. I am glad to say that we have received literally
hundreds of nominations for Panel membership and that organisations which have not previously been involved
are making it very clear that they want to contribute. I am also very pleased to say that we are putting together
a team of extremely able and high calibre Chairmen. The list is not yet complete but I can tell you that Jim
Stretton, Chief Executive of Standard Life, has agreed to lead the Ageing Population Panel and that Deidre
Hutton from the Scottish Consumers Council will be chairing the Food Chain Panel.
Associate Programmes are another manifestation of the interest in contributing to the next round. They are
literally a response to popular demand. To professional institutes and other bodies coming to us and making it
clear that they want to contribute in areas where they have knowledge and expertise to offer.
Associate Programmes may be relevant to one panel or many. The Institution of Electrical Engineers, for
example, is focusing on the use of IT in schools and its report will feed in directly to the work in that area of the
Information, Communications and Media Panel. The Institute of Physic is focusing on Ageing Population and
Crime Prevention. But other studies may produce some material or inspiration to a number of other panels.

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                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
But our efforts to promote broader participation go wider than that. We want to involve a much larger cross
section of the population, and make it possible for anyone who has something to offer to contribute to
Foresight. The Ageing Population Panel offers one obvious vehicle for testing this approach. The Panel will have
access to the material produced by the Millennium Debate of the Age but we shall certainly want to explore the
scope for using regional events - both to inform the Panel and to get reactions to its ideas from the very people
whose future needs and wants it is trying to define. Material from the Scotland’s Future debate may also be
relevant, both here and in relation to other Panels. And I would hope there would be two-way communication
between Foresight Panels and the Clusters strategy being developed by Scottish Enterprise. Each can influence
and add value to the other.
We particularly want to involve the young people who will be responsible for putting Foresight visions into
practice.
We want to see more young people from business and academia either being involved directly in Panel activities
or contributing to Associate Programmes or Foresight exercises at company, sectoral or disciplinary level.
And we want to take Foresight into schools and both encourage children to think about the challenges of the
future and excite and inspire their interest in the role of science and technology in shaping that future.
Something we see as absolutely crucial to achieving Foresight’s long term objectives.
I am happy to say that one of the Associate Programmes in the pipeline involves our linking up with the
Association for Schools, Science Engineering and Technology and using their network of contacts with schools
to involve 14-18 year olds. There is enormous interest in this project, both from schools and from business, and I
hope that there will be a strong Scottish input. But we would be glad to work with any other organisations
which are active in this area and offer us a route into schools.
Thanks to sponsorship from Rolls Royce and BBC Haymarket Publications and additional support from Nuffield
Design and Technology, AEA Technology and the University of Nottingham we shall also shortly be publishing a
schools edition of this booklet on Tomorrow’s Materials which has been specially designed as an aid for teaching
the Design and Technology element of the National Curriculum in England and Wales and for the first time, will
take Foresight directly into the classroom.
Schools and young people generally are a particular target but we want to make the whole Foresight process
more open and inclusive. In June, we shall therefore be publishing the agenda of every panel and the specific
objectives Panels have set themselves. And from the end of the year Panels will be putting their initial ideas and
proposals out for comment and consultation. This will add value to panel outputs by exposing their analysis to
scrutiny before reports are finalised and provide another opportunity for people who are not involved directly in
Panel activities to make a contribution.
Underpinning all this activity will be the Knowledge Pool, not just a library of knowledge and data on which
Panels and others can draw but a platform
•   for broader participation and interaction between panels and other participants
•   for bring together people with complementary and conflicting views of the future
•   and fostering the setting up of new collaborative networks and the future expansion of existing ones.
We are very conscious of the fact that the Pool and the process as a whole will need careful management but
we will be doing our level best to make it work as effectively as possible. And we are very pleased by the
support we’ve had both for the concept and from potential contributors. If it works as we envisage it, it will add
a substantial new dimension to Foresight by giving organisations up and down the UK the opportunity to access
data from a single source and use it to inform their own Foresight thinking and processes.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I hope that introduction to the thinking behind the next round will help to put the
contributions from other speakers into perspective. For those of you who have not seen it, copies of the
blueprint are available at the back of the hall. I look forward to working with Scottish colleagues in putting it
into practice.


FORESIGHT AND THE SCOTTISH SCIENCE BASE, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OF SHEFC, PROFESSOR JOHN SIZER
CBE
Introduction
Good morning. I would like to thank the Royal Society of Edinburgh and its President Professor Jeeves for
hosting this event and for his introduction. I am pleased to have been invited to speak to such a distinguished
audience on the subject of Foresight and the Scottish science base.


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                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
I speak today primarily in my capacity as the Chief Executive of the Scottish Higher Education Funding Council,
although I am also a member of the Foresight Steering Group and was closely involved in producing the
blueprint for the next round of Foresight. You can take from that that I am convinced of the value and
significance of Foresight to industry, academia and the Funding Council, and to Scotland’s future prosperity and
quality of life.
I have been asked to talk this morning on Foresight and the Scottish science base in three broad areas :
•   the relevance of Foresight to academia and the Scottish science base;
•   the achievements of Scottish higher education institutions so far; and
•   future activity in Scotland.
Action Plans
First, however, I warmly welcome the Minister’s comments this morning on the need for action plans in
developing a framework for future action on Foresight in Scotland. After consulting widely on how best the
Council should address Foresight, three years ago we published a Foresight action plan which was approved by
the Secretary of State. I believe this provided a clearly focused and firm basis for action which have guided the
Council in subsequent years. As the Office of Science and Technology’s consultation document put it, Foresight
is about actions, not words. I will tell you later about some of the actions that have resulted from our plan.
I can also confirm that the Council will be revisiting its plan in the context of the next round of Foresight and in
doing so will seek to work closely with partners in developing the framework action plan for Scotland. There is
much there that can be developed and integrated flexibly with existing and future initiatives on the part of
others, and I look forward to working with other bodies on developing co-ordinated action plans to take
forward Foresight in Scotland.
The Relevance of Foresight to Academia and the Scottish Science Base
As I mentioned, the Funding Council engaged the academic community and others in a consultation on
addressing Foresight early in the first round of Foresight. We recognised the academic community to be a major
stakeholder in the vision set out in the Foresight programme. I see two main roles for the academic community
in contributing to Foresight.
Firstly, the academic community has many of the capabilities required to address the long term market
opportunities and threats that our future economy and society will face.
Identifying and addressing these is key to Foresight. Higher education institutions are a critical success factor at
the heart of the knowledge economy, of knowledge based competitiveness, of learning societies and of learning
economies. Scotland has a well deserved world class reputation in science and engineering. Science is
advancing knowledge at a rapid pace. This is generating new industries, presenting new opportunities and
challenges for business innovation.
Higher education institutions have always been in the business of research and innovation, of knowledge
generation and commercialisation. Working with business, Foresight can identify these opportunities in the
science base, contributing to the health of the Scottish economy in the global marketplace.
Secondly, identifying the emerging capabilities of, and demand for, science, engineering and technology is
another key objective of Foresight. Evidently, higher education has an indispensable role here – the emerging
capabilities of the science base can best be judged using the expertise of the science base.
Dialogue with the science base is therefore vital for potential users of output of the science base to refine their
demands of science, engineering and technology. Innovative businesses can then engage with the science
community, looking to its strengths and capabilities as a national resource to compete effectively in the global
knowledge driven economy. As the Minister rightly said, Foresight and the knowledge driven economy are not
simply about the strengths of the science base, but the science base plays a central underpinning role in driving
these.
I see Foresight as helping academia to identify future opportunities:
•   new areas for research
•   new applications for existing research
•   new partnership and networks
For business, it helps to provide visions affecting it beyond normal commercial timescales, reducing risk,
increasing productivity and improving the effectiveness of R&D investment. It also creates networks and
partnerships providing access to knowledge skills. I wish to see the science base remain at the heart of these
networks.


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                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
The Achievements of Scottish Higher Education Institutions So Far
I now turn to the achievements of the Scottish higher education institutions so far in addressing Foresight, as
seen from the perspective of the Scottish Higher Education Funding Council.
The Council has helped with a number of initiatives related to Foresight in Scotland. For example [elaborate on
these]:
•   the series of Foresight seminars joint with the Royal Society of Edinburgh and Scottish Enterprise
•   supporting the initial development and expansion of CONNECT (a forum for co-operation between the
    commercial, policy-making and academic communities providing Scottish technology companies with access
    to crucial financial, managerial and technical resources, now operating throughout Scotland)
The Council also periodically surveys the higher education institutions on their responses to Foresight. It will next
be doing so this summer.
However, the main component of the Council’s action plan on addressing Foresight was the introduction of the
Research Development Grant, which was introduced in 1996. You will have seen outside poster displays of
some of the investments made through this grant.
The explicit objective of the grant scheme is to seek to help improve the fit between the research capability of
the Scottish higher education institutions and the long-term needs of society and the Scottish economy. In other
words, we want to encourage Scottish academics to think broadly and ambitiously about their future research
agendas and the contribution they can make to the changing world. Instead of guessing and fearing the future,
it allows us to consider scenarios, to decide on the future we want and to work to achieve it.
The Council has consciously tried to make the RDG different from other funding schemes. We expect proposals
to have identified a niche market opportunity or threat within the Foresight time horizon, either within the
Scottish, UK or global context, which a strategic investment from the Council would help to address.
In other words, this is Foresight in action. We want to provide a channel for the excitement of research and the
beneficial effects it can have on the economy. Its focus is on the long-term benefits which developments in
knowledge can provide, including benefits aligned to the needs of the Scottish economy.
An annual competitions is run to allocate funds. While funds are available for up to three years, our aim is to
establish a range of centres, facilities and activities that will continue to have an influence and make positive
contributions to society and the economy in ten, or even twenty, years time. We allocate funding across all
Foresight sectors, not just those relating to the knowledge economy. About £10M will be allocated in 1999-
2000, with ongoing and new commitments being made for later years.
Collaborative bids are particularly welcomed – indeed partnerships are key to a number of awards, with
complementary skills coming together to address new problems. Collaborating for Scotland.
Examples of successful bids made are :
University of Dundee: A research facility for developing high resolution electronic structures
(£175,000)
Silicon chips are at the heart of most modern electronic products from computers and video recorders to
telephones and teamakers. Their manufacture involves a series of steps, each of which must be very accurately
controlled. With the demand for ever more powerful and hence more complex silicon chips the search for a
simple method of producing high resolution electronic structures has become more urgent. Professor Jim Cairns
and his colleagues at the University of Dundee have devised an approach to their production which promises the
prospect of a single processing step or 'one step chip'. At the time of award most of the high added value raw
materials used in silicon chip manufacture were supplied by Japanese companies. The Dundee technology
presents an opportunity for Scotland to establish itself in a pivotal, global, niche market producing high value
added products in this continually expanding global industry.
University of Glasgow: REVELATION: A foundation for advanced and precise communication
experiments (£665,000)
 High performance networks to transform our use of information. REVELATION is providing an infrastructure
combining a leading-edge IT platform and a centre of expertise. This will enable the rapid development of wholly
new methods of communication, significantly in advance of those currently used over the Internet. Outcomes
might be: new information services marketed from Scotland; new products for the existing Scottish electronics
industry; a competitive edge for Scottish research; and quick access to expert advice from remote medical,
engineering and scientific specialists.
Queen Margaret College: Scottish centre for research into speech disability (£320,000)
Foresight and the Research Development Grant is also concerned with improving the quality of life.


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                                           3rd February 1999

                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
The Scottish Centre for Research into Speech Disability provides a unique focus for interdisciplinary research into
the nature and treatment of speech disorders, bringing together professionals and leading researchers from the
fields of speech and language therapy, speech science, linguistics, psychology, medicine, computer technology
and industry. State of the art research facilities have been customised for different groups including children and
severely disabled individuals who use technology in order to supplement their spoken, or written,
communication.
Some examples from the second round of the competition, which are at too early a stage to include in the
poster exhibition are:
•   environmental reclamation of 'brownfield' sites in the Central Belt, including the use of micro-organisms to
    combat pollutants;
•   the economics and production of renewable electricity sources;
•   the use of chaos theory by Heriot-Watt University to analyse such diverse and unpredictable areas as
    financial markets and cardiac health care;
•   developing high-tech materials for medical uses, including the treatment of burns and the creation of
    prosthetic limbs;
•   [Alba Project] a research facility to develop 'lab-on-a-chip' technology will transform the communications
    industry in the next millennium and provide a world-class research facility for the electronics industry. This
    will provide a key competitive advantage to the Scottish electronics base.
Future Activity in Scotland
The Government’s Comprehensive Spending Review has allocated additional funding to the Funding Council for
research infrastructure in areas of excellence aligned to the needs of the Scottish economy. These additional
resources of £23M over 3 years will be administered through the Research Development Grant scheme, which
will continue to be the main financial means by which the Council addresses Foresight.
The scheme will be flexible, though. The Council now reserves some of these resources for allocation outwith
the annual competition in order to have the capacity to support high quality proposals through other valid
mechanisms. Looking to the future, I envisage using some of these funds, perhaps in joint ventures with other
funders, to reshape parts of the Scottish science base to research infrastructure in areas aligned to the needs of
the Scottish economy. We are discussing with Scottish Enterprise how the Research Development Grant can be
integrated with Scottish Enterprise’s Clusters Strategy.
Future funding decisions in our grant scheme will be influenced by the development of a Foresight Action Plan
for Scotland, which I warmly welcome. Higher education institutions have a central role in high added value
research and innovation led economies which Scotland must aspire to be. They have to, and do, collaborate
with each other and with other key players to create and sustain competitive advantage for key research and
innovation led industries, and support the development of clusters which have a concentrated focus on new
and emerging technologies. I am aware that in highly competitive global markets this is easier said than done,
which is why my Council must work effectively with other key players if we are to deliver Government’s and the
new Parliament’s vision for Scotland.




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              THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
FORESIGHT AND THE SCOTTISH ECONOMY, RAY MACFARLANE, MANAGING DIRECTOR, OPERATIONS,
SCOTTISH ENTERPRISE




       The Knowledge Economy -
       a different world emerging!
      More information demanded,
      produced and communicated

      Smarter, customised products,
      higher level services                                                       A
                                                                             Knowledge-
      Shorter product life cycles                                               Based
      Commoditisation of basic                                                Economy!
      resources, products and
      services

      Value in “intangibles”

          Competitive advantage comes from: innovation, creativity,
              speed; securing attention; building relationships




               The Changing Economy




      Economies becoming more international; . .
                                                          . . technologies creating new industries . .




                                   . . and transforming existing ones




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                                      3rd February 1999

           THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE




   Scotland’s Economic Position
p International                 Opportunities
  markets
                                                     p Market growth
p Inward                                             p New markets
  investment        Strengths                        p New products/
p Research base
                                                       processes
p Electronics
                                                     p E-commerce
p Tourism
                                                     p Identity/ size

p Business starts
p Business R&D                                       p Price
  and innovation                                       competition
p Few global                         Threats         p New players
  companies                                          p EU policy reform
p Attitudes to                                       p Obsolete skills
  learning          Weaknesses                       p Migration
p Static                                             p Y2K
  population




          A New Strategy for Economic
          Development in Scotland
          yA vision for Scotland
             y prosperous  and inclusive;
             y positive and outward-looking;

             y confidentin developing innovative new products,
               processes, services, and technologies.
          yBalancing
             y long    and short term
             y opportunityand need
             y conservatism and risk




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               THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE



       The Importance of Foresight

       yFocuses on the long-term future -
        where to go and how to get there
           y Sets coherent picture of trends, drivers
             and uncertainties
           y Helps    build desirable vision for the future
           y Provides     a framework of routes to the
             future
           y Identifies     critical core competencies




      New Strategy Goals for
      Scotland                                             Health, social services
  Government                                                 Employment service
  Companies                                                         Communities
  Education    Innovative , far               Positive attitudes      Goverment
  Research         sighted                     to learning and         Employers
  People        organisations                     enterprise            Education
                                                                          Housing
                                                                           People




People
Housing
Tourism
                                                                           People
Planning                                              An inclusive
                  A competitive                                         Education
Transport
                       place                           economy         Employers
Employers
Government                                                            Government
Property markets                                                 Enterprise trusts
Infrastructure providers                                         Business services

  Partnership, shared goals and combined action critical




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                              3rd February 1999

    THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE




 Innovative, Far-Sighted
 Organisations

Innovative, far-     p Promote innovation in all industries
    sighted
 organisations       p Build clusters of key industries
                     p Support innovation networks
                     p Support commercialisation of science
                     p Promote E-commerce
                     p Provide high-tech, risk capital finance
                     p Attract high-value investment
                     p Promote exports and international JVs
                     p Nurture potential global companies
                     p Promote sustainable business




Foresight II and Scotland’s
economic development
yLinks government investment in
 research, science and technology
with
yScotland’s development as a
 knowledge-based society




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                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
FORESIGHT: A PERSPECTIVE FROM SCOTTISH INDUSTRY, DR GEORGE BENNETT CBE, FORMER VICE-
PRESIDENT OF MOTOROLA, EAST KILBRIDE
Foresight is highly relevant to industry in Scotland, since it is about anticipating the future, and is action
orientated. The focus is on wealth creation and quality of life, and the initiative fosters networking, partnerships
and collaboration to provide insight into:
•   Future market opportunities and threats
•   Emerging capabilities which drive our roadmaps for science, engineering and technology,
•   and helps us visualise and anticipate the education, skills and knowledge base required by our future
    workforce
The question is how can Scotland's industry participate and leverage the Foresight initiative? Particularly when
the next round of Foresight is about learning from our experience, building on achievements and adding value
by addressing issues and fostering the development of collaboration.
In response to the initial launch, the science base in Scotland responded well in panel participation to the
Foresight challenge, and in supporting SHEFC research initiative. Industry also gave a positive response to the
RSE Foresight seminars but overall the reaction to Foresight was muted, with little or no participation or
involvement from our small and medium sized enterprises.
Given that outline I would like to examine some of the lessons learned from two previous Foresight initiatives
and in the spirit of the second round propose potential solutions to the issues, and also look at a new business
model for one specific industry which requires collaboration at the highest level. I would also like to propose a
process for anticipating our future skill demand and developing a skills pipeline to fuel future industry growth.
The society has played an important role in the implementation and dissemination of the Foresight initiative and
technology ventures, the strategy for commercialising Scotland's science and technology. It has actively fostered
collaboration between academia and industry, promoting and hosting foresight seminars on:
•   Semiconductors
•   Oil and gas industries
•   Optoelectronics
•   Pharmaceuticals
•   Molecular medicine and healthcare
•   Software industry
•   Chemicals industry, and
•   IPR and technology transfer
The society with its international reputation and status as a learning institution attracted commercial and
technology leaders from global corporations within each sector. These leaders presentations excited and
enthralled us with an insight into their corporations research and business developments, which gave us a vision
of future markets and business opportunities. The seminars were extremely successful as events, stimulating
interest and discussion within an audience of university leaders in technology and commerce and with multi-
national and small business leaders. Although the events were successful, subsequent collaboration of R&D
projects from industry and potential commercialisation was an issue.
I should point out at this stage that my comments and observations are focussed primarily at the electronics
sector although similar experience may have been reflected in other sectors.
The industry audience was polarised where the small firms did not have the funding or the necessary
infrastructure to engage, while many of the multi-national organisations did not have research and development
or commercialisation on their strategic agenda.
Their focus is dominated by:
•   Volume
•   Quality
•   Productivity
•   Customer service and logistics
•   New product introduction
•   Skill development
•   Cost, and in some instances
•   Design



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                                           3rd February 1999

                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
We should not have been surprised by this outcome since the total Scottish research and development
investment is only -1.4% of GDP versus 2.0% of GDP for the UK, which is low by comparison with competitive
countries.
The underlying cause of low investment is the absence of major manufacturing companies headquartered in
Scotland and the metrics, and hence the outcomes we generate from financial incentives to inward investors are
based on:
•   Capital expenditure and
•   Number of people employed
To generate output the seminars required follow up linkages, there is little or no coupling mechanism today, and
the little there is, is tenuous unless it is aligned and supports the corporations key technology strategy and
objectives. Otherwise the projects will not have priority status and will always be vulnerable.
A similar picture emerges from the experience of the formation and the projects of the National Microelectronics
Institute, which was established in 1996 and is located in the Science Park of the Heriot Watt University in
Edinburgh. The Institute was formed following a strong recommendation from the first round of Foresight and
active participation by the DTI. The Institutes' membership are all multinational inward investors and are fierce
competitors in the semiconductor market place. The organisation funded by the members is highly successful in
collaborative projects such as:
•   Skills initiatives
•   Training and education
•   Sharing best practice
•   Health and safety standards and
•   Utilities
•   Projects which support their common strategic agenda
Manufacturing process development, product development and research is not a shared discussion topic, since
the vast majority of the ownership, funding and decision makers is directed by offices outwith Scotland and the
U K.
As a major Foresight objective is to bring industry and the science base closer together we need to give
organisations the ambition to think about new approaches, products, services and applications. To help our
industries to grow and succeed in the future we need as a foundation:
•   A better skilled workforce
•   A modernised infrastructure
•   Encouragement for investment, particularly in value added expansion
•   Specific help for small companies
We also know that every business can benefit from collaboration at all levels of' technology. New ideas which
are the source of future wealth will often come from networks of business and organisations that work closely
together.
We need to foster and grow the links and activities in areas of common interest and selectively seed links in
barren areas. Opportunities exist to:
•   Fund in-depth study of future skills and education requirement.
•   Second school career advisors to industrial placement with special emphasis in science and engineering.
•   Expand the Royal Society schools lectures.
•   Develop customised university courses for industry, in industry to keep the workforce abreast of
    technological developments.
•   Establish university and college application laboratories using donated industry products and systems
    focussing on new applications in key chosen fields, such as
    • Transportation and Telecommunications
    • Fund additional university fellowships targeting business and industry candidates at key areas of
        potential commercialisation.
    • Accelerate the rate of acceptance of information technology which influence all aspects of
        manufacturing with a particular emphasis on small business.
    • Encourage funding possibly through tax incentives for small companies undertaking research and
        development.
    • Increase the number of business incubation centres throughout the country.


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                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
IN CONCLUSION
The focus in Scotland for next round of Foresight must be:
•  Increase the number and frequency of industry and science linkages at all levels of technology.
•  Greater involvement by indigenous business in key sectoral panels, such as:
   • Energy and natural environment
   • Financial services
   • Healthcare
   • Communications and media
• Identification of executives of high potential SME's to serve on panels.
• Targeted representation on thematic panels, e.g. manufacturing 2020.
• Encouragement of government to introduce incentives for business investment in R&D.
• Encourage inward investment in R&D in projects similar in concept to ALBA initiative.
• Have an independent but complementary Foresight focal point in Scotland.
And finally
Scotland urgently needs to recognise that many companies are moving out of commodity manufacturing and
embracing IP creation creating partnerships that reduce their dependence on internal manufacturing.




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                                           3rd February 1999

                THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
SUMMARY FROM PANEL DISCUSSION
•   The importance of aligning the various strategic initiatives currently underway in Scotland (e.g. Foresight,
    Technology Ventures, and the Cluster strategy) was emphasised.
•   The Cluster Strategy creates a new and exciting opportunity for Scotland. Its goal of enhancing our
    competitiveness requires the building of cross-sectoral linkages and ensuring that we ask for the right
    actions from our universities. In some societies the universities are the drivers for regional strategies.
    Examples include MIT in Massachusetts, University of Texas in Austin, and some of the commercial
    universities in the US.
•   Universities have to be at the centre of the Cluster Strategy. Much of the required innovation will come from
    them. They respond well to the challenges of the knowledge economy and SHEFC have a very forward-
    looking approach.
•   The Technology Ventures Initiative has demonstrated a remarkable change in attitudes towards
    commercialisation. The Knowledge Task Force, due to report at the end of March, will make proposals on
    how this can be built upon during the next stage.
•   Scotland should aim to win at least one of the eight Enterprise Centres at UK universities currently being bid
    for under the £25 million Science Enterprise Challenge. The Knowledge Task Force has this objective on its
    agenda.
•   Scotland should take more advantage of the Edinburgh Science Festival. Make it a world event.
•   The RSE Foresight seminars have been an outstanding success: they now need to change gear and
    emphasise outcomes and actions. For example, build application laboratories between universities and
    industry which follow through the theme of the seminar.
•   Scotland needs to encourage the establishment of local software research centres by leading corporations.
    These include European as well as US companies. Scottish industry loses its best graduates who, for career
    reasons, have to leave Scotland or become members of university faculties. This is also the case in other
    disciplines.
•   A major problem, which has to be addressed as part of the Foresight programme, is public understanding of
    new technologies. This is a focus item within DTI. It was suggested that some of the problems relating to
    perceptions of genetically modified food could have been resolved if Foresight had been implemented
    during the 1980s.
•   Public understanding is a major concern of the RSE and is a major agenda item on the newly formed
    Scottish Science Trust. The need to be inclusive is recognised, and in particular the need to secure the
    interest of young people.
•   This requirement to involve young people in the Foresight process was stressed, as was the desirability of
    encouraging entrepreneurial attitudes at an early education stage. Among the proposals to take this forward
                                th
    was the introduction of 6 form Foresight Forums and the development of videos for schools. OST
    recognise the need to involve the youth of the country.
•   The necessity for a Foresight focus on skills was emphasised. The Scottish Council of National Training
    Organisations will work with its National Training Organisation members to enhance the skills of the Scottish
    workforce. All Foresight Panels have an obligation to take skills and training into account.
•   Skills and social inclusion is a problem in Scotland. A generation gap has developed because the skills of
    yesteryear are less appropriate to the demands of today’s knowledge economy. A £60 million per annum,
    five-year programme has been introduced to address this. A skill’s strategy is being prepared which aims to
    lift the entire skill base in Scotland.
•   Government will set the pace. The Scottish Parliament will embed itself in new technology. Project Alba is a
    step up the value chain. A modern Scotland will be a magnet to investors. We must build on our record on
    inward investment (best in Europe) by modernising as quickly as possible.
•   Because it is not within Scottish Enterprise’s remit to fund other public organisations the establishment of a
    private company by a university provides a vehicle through which it can potentially receive SE financial
    support.
•   We need all types of university – new or old, renaissance or post industrial – to address the challenges of the
    new economy. The important point is to ensure that they are first rate at what they do.


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               THE NEXT ROUND OF FORESIGHT – A SCOTTISH PERSPECTIVE
•   Sustainable development is important. All organisations must work together to achieve this. As they plan
    their programmes in response to the Foresight challenges they should form partnerships with relevant bodies
    (e.g. trade organisations) in order to enhance networking and to ensure an inclusive approach.
•   The Scottish Foresight Forum - with representation from the SO, RSE, SHEFC, CBI Scotland, SE, COSHEP and
    Highland & Islands Enterprise - meets periodically to discuss how best to move Foresight forward. It is
    important that it receives input from all sectors of the economy. However, all organisations have the
    responsibility for carrying forward the process internally.
•   Representation on the Foresight Panels is important, especially for business, and any suggestions for
    membership should be relayed to Joe Brown at SOEID.
The Royal Society of Edinburgh
  Foresight Seminar Series




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