Future Search Methodology

(Five sessions each lasting 1/2 day)

Day 1, Afternoon

Focus on the Past
People make time lines of key events in the world, their own lives, and in the history of the future search topic. Small groups tell stories about each time line and the implications of their stories for the work they have come to do.

Focus on Present, External Trends
The whole group makes a “mind map” of trends affecting them now and identifies those trends most important for their topic.

Day 2, Morning

Focus on Present, External Trends
Stakeholder groups describe what they are doing now about key trends and what they want to do in the future.

Focus on Present
Stakeholder groups report what they are proud of and sorry about in the way they are dealing with the Future Search topic.

Day 2, Afternoon

Ideal Future Scenarios
Diverse groups put themselves into the future and describe their preferred future as if it has already been accomplished.

Identify Common Ground
Diverse Groups post themes they believe are common ground for everyone.

Day 3, Morning & Early Afternoon

Confirm Common Ground
Whole group dialogues to agree on common ground. Voluntary groups write Common Ground Statements that reflect the will of everyone present.

Action Planning
Volunteers sign up to implement action plans.

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