Navigation path

Digital Futures Work Plan

Digital Futures achieves its objectives through an agile work plan consisting of an initial scoping and trial phase followed by three sequential phases (see next picture). Each of the phases ends with a major project milestone identifying a complete release of the visions and policy ideas. The project's duration is 26 Months, from September 2011 to November 2013.

Phase 0, "Scoping and Trial" (4 months, from Sep 11 to Dec 11): engagement of DG CONNECT staff and operational set up of the project. This phase produces the first internal draft (alpha version) of the Digital Futures visions as well as a report of the internal trial highlighting best practices and lesson learnt.

Phase 1, "Release 1" (10 months, from Jan 12 to Oct 12): initial engagement of stakeholders to build the first draft of the visions and policy ideas. This phase delivers also a new policy making model (policy making 3.0) and its prototype implementation, i.e. an online tool (called futurium) for the co-creation of the visions and policy ideas.

Phase 2, "Release 2" (7 months, from Nov 12 to May 13): massive engagement of stakeholders, online and in person, for the further co-creation, refinement and prioritisation of visions and policy ideas, and reality check against stakeholders' views.

Phase 3, "Release 3 (final)" (6 months, from Jun 13 to Nov 13): integrating and consolidating all the work developed in the previous phases and drawing policy recommendations for the next Commission's programming cycle.

Each of the above phases ends with a major project milestone. Intermediate milestones may be set on the basis of emerging needs and the overall evolution of the project.

The work plan is also divided into five functional work packages: 1) Scoping and trial; 2) Content development and curation; 3) Events, communication and stakeholder engagement; 4) Policy making 3.0 and foresight methodology; 5) Project Management.

Scoping and trial

Overall purpose: engagement of DG CONNECT staff and operational set up of the project

Sub-Work areas:

  • Set up of the Digital Futures task force
  • Set up of basic project web sites and collaborative tools (web sites, file sharing, …)
  • Develop the first internal draft (alpha-release) of the visions
  • Raise awareness of DF within DG CONNECT and engage staff
  • Test foresight and knowledge elicitation techniques in an internal trial

Deliverables (à = milestone)

Due Date

First internal draft (alpha-release) of the visions and policy ideas à

Dec 2011

Report of the internal trial, best practices and lesson learnt

Jan 2012



Content development and curation

Overall purpose: contribution to the co-creation of trends, visions and policy ideas, content curation, quality assurance (style and linguistic checking), referencing of content, building of the evidence base, mining and interpretation of knowledge from data.

Sub-Work areas:

  • Synthesis
  • Synthesis of trends and visions (futures) contributed by stakeholders according to the digital futures foresight model
  • Synthesis of policy ideas contributed by stakeholders according to the digital futures foresight model; each policy idea underpins one or more visions; each vision is implemented by one or more policy ideas.
  • Analysis
  • Mapping of visions into trends (back casting) and unfolding of trends into visions (fore casting); analysis of causality relations between visions to help appraising their likelihood to materialise.
  • Voting of visions in terms of desirability (emotional reaction) and likelihood (rational reaction); data mining of the votes casted by the stakeholders and prioritisation of visions.
  • Voting of policy ideas in terms of impact (measure of the importance of the policy ideas) and support (measure of the overall support given by stakeholders); analysis and data mining of the votes casted by the participants; prioritise policy ideas on the basis of the votes expressed by stakeholders.
  • Map policy ideas against possible agents or actors, i.e. stakeholders who would implement or be affected by the policy ideas.
  • Analysis of policy ideas in terms of Strengths Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) as seen from the perspective of the agents; What-If Analysis as perceived by the stakeholders to help informing the voting of policy ideas.
  • Perform a reality checks through online role games simulating the behaviours and reactions of the stakeholders to the policy ideas.
  • Curation
  • Build evidence underpinning trends, visions and policy ideas by: a) Populating and curating a library of relevant scientific references (articles, books, foresight reports, including those made by other commission departments, EU-funded projects, member states, stakeholders, etc.); b) Creating references between content (trends, visions and policy ideas) and library entries;
  • Quality check and re-styling of visions according to pre-defined formats (narrative, essay, news,…), cross-referencing visions addressing similar topics, proof-reading and sanity check, etc.
  • Harvesting
  • Harvesting (summary) of knowledge co-created by the participants during online and in-person events using mind maps and other knowledge representation tools.
  • Interview prominent experts on their thoughts on futures; editing and production of the videos, annotation with semantic information and linking to other type of content.

Deliverables (à = milestone)

Due Date

First draft release of the DF visions à

Oct 2012

First draft release of the DF policy ideas à

Nov 2012

Second draft release of the DF visions and policy ideas à

May 2013

Final release of the DF visions and policy ideas à

Nov 2013

Library of references to other foresight exercises and their mapping into Digital Futures content (supported by futurium)

On-going

Analysis of the votes expressed by the participants on visions and policy ideas, data mining and correlation of participants' views (provided by futurium)

On-going

Causality links between visions and policy roadmaps (provided by futurium)

On-going

SWOT analysis (Strengths Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats)

May 2013, Nov 2013

What-If Analysis

May 2013, Nov 2013

Report on the simulation of futures through online role games and multi agent systems approaches.

May 2013, Nov 2013

Interviews with stakeholders

one week after the interview

Mind maps summarising events outcomes

one week after the event

Events, communication and stakeholder engagement

Overall purpose: engagement stakeholders into Digital Futures (i.e. contribution to the trends, visions and policy ideas), hosting and facilitation of in-person and online events, facilitation of social media, dissemination of project deliverables, etc.

Sub-Work areas:

  • Engage, host and facilitate the participation of stakeholders on futurium
  • Animate popular social networks and invite participants to join futurium
  • Update web presence on EUROPA
  • Update web presence on CONNECT (intranet)
  • Host and facilitate online events
  • Host and facilitate "Going Local" events
  •  Set up, host and facilitate brainstorming events with specific groups of stakeholders (e.g.: EP, EESC, COR, ETNO, EBU, EDA, ESN, Trainee network, Other DGs,…); and invite participants to co-create on futurium
  • Organise interviews with key contributors, publishing and dissemination of the interviews

Deliverables (à = milestone)

Due Date

Updated web sites (EUROPA and CONNECT),

Ongoing

Updates and animated (always-on posting and engagement) Digital Futures platform (futurium)

Ongoing

Updated and animated (always-on posting and engagement) social media presence

Ongoing

Organised, hosted and facilitated online and in-person events (harvesting is part of the "content" work package)

Ongoing

Reports of individual events summarising participants' experience in Digital Futures events (actual visions and polity options are addressed under the work package "Content").

Ongoing

Organised and disseminated interviews.

Ongoing

Policy Making 3.0

Overall purpose: define and demonstrate the viability of a new policy making and foresight approach that will enable citizens to co-create visions and policy ideas and express their votes on them.

Sub-Work areas:

  • Define a general model for evidence based, agile and participatory policy making (Policy Making 3.0)
  • Implement a prototype online platform that implements the policy making 3.0 model (futurium)

Deliverables (à = milestone)

Due Date

Model for Policy Making 3.0

Oct 2012

Platform implementing the PM 3.0 model (futurium) à

Oct 2012

Project Management

Overall purpose: ensure an efficient and sound management of the project in terms of planning, budget, execution of the work plan and timely delivery of results

Sub-Work areas:

  • Reviewing
  • Planning
  • Reporting
  • HR Matters
  • Capacity building and training
  • Administrative and financial matters
  • Regular reporting to hierarchy

Deliverables (à = milestone)

Due Date

Consolidated project work plan (this document)

Jan 2012

Mid-term reports to prepare project reviews at the end of each phase

End of previous phase

Short reports to prepare monthly meetings with the Director General

Monthly

Final Project Report, including version for the political audience à

Oct 2013