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Internal Core Foresight Workshop

Internal workshop

This workshop sought to drill down into the trends and visions previously harvested from INFSO staff mind mapping sessions in order to elaborate the trends and visions in greater detail.

Staff engagement in the Digital Futures process is an objective in itself as well as being a step on the way to a comprehensive set of 2050 visions by the end of 2013, which will through back-casting help with the preparation of the 2020 Commission mandate.



The participants received prior to the meeting the outcome of the internal trial as a "food for thought".

The workshop used World Cafe and Participatory Leadership techniques in order to deliver the output below and discussions took place based on the six dimensions: Technology, Politics, Economics, Environment, Personal, and Society.

The group of +/-30 people was divided into small groups corresponding to the hexagon used by Digital Futures to map its output from the outset of the project. On voluntary basis a rapporteur has been selected for each group to summarise the discussions.


Top-ranking Themes Based on Voting Results:

Comparative table per dimension on themes of most likely, highest impact and most desired:


Most likely

Highest impact

Most desired


Creativity beyond media





More empowerment,

Shift towards experts with transparency


Scarcity of resources

Local consolidation


Lack of land, food, energy will create a "war" due to large migration

Europe should continue leading


Stronger prevails( Darwinism)


Egualitarian flat society


New values with migration and mixed couples

Life expectancy

Value of "being" and less "doing" or "having".


Brief Description of the Themes:

  1. Most likely and with highest impact:
    • Creativity beyond media: Creativity will be a crucial skill of the futures with its study and supporting tools expanded far beyond the realms of media, design or the arts.
    • Scarcity of resources: Economic power shift caused by scarcity of energy, food, water. Complacency arising from peak-oil leading to rapid collapse of unprepared economies, wars in several dimensions (e.g. cyber).
    • Lack of land, food, energy will create a "war" due to large migration: Europe and many other regions in the world go through a crisis created by a lack of land, food and energy. The crisis can be only solved through sustained investment in more energy efficient technologies hand in hand with a larger policy concern for the environment. ("War against pollution") Climate researchers warn about disaster and global warming but policy-makers fail to agree on strategy and for decades, migration streams start and cause conflicts.
  2. Most likely:
    • Stronger prevails (Darwinism): The society where only a few will decide and for all, either as elected representatives or because new forms of oligarchic power will emerge that will be able to exert societal manipulation with a Darwinian principle that the stronger prevail over the weaker in the flight for "survival".
    • Power/elites: The current disenchantment with politics and existing elites will be reinforced and lead to concerns about legitimacy.
    • New values with migration and mixed couples: Migration and mainstream new values, believes and religions into society.
  3. Highest impact:
    • Immigration: International development will be important for Europe, with immigration as a major consequence and the linked concern that religion may be instrumentalised for political ends.
    • Religion: Religion will evolve towards personalised interpretations of traditional religious faiths. New forms of religion emerge formed and facilitated on the Internet. Religious conflicts or more tolerant values can prevail.
    • Life expectancy: Technological advances in health care will change medical approaches, corrective measures and trans-humanism will transform human gene pool and increase life expectancy.
  4. Most desired:
    • Governance: Achieving a more collective governance and better balance between technologies as common good and as an economic value.
    • More empowerment: With network effect and information flow, shift in power structures will be accelerated towards more empowerment.
    • Shift towards experts with transparency: The appetite for transparency may increase, given the aggravated risk of conflict of interest. The balance between expert opinion and direct crowd-sourced opinion will be crucial.
    • Europe should continue leading: Europe decides early in 21st century to invest in education to boost its competitiveness and becomes a leader in new energy, environmental technologies. Bringing the most important industries.
    • Local consolidation: Democratisation of 3D printers fosters "Maker" movement, among the others, makes possible the localised production of many consumer items like clothes and toys.
    • Egualitarian flat society: The society is characterised with neither classes nor hierarchies but participatory democracy, where all have the possibility to co-decide on most if not all issues that matter.
    • Value of "being" and less "doing" or "having": Generations growing up during times of crisis with uncertainty about future turn towards different than western values and life-styles based on power, career, success and money. The values based on more interpersonal relations or re-discovering old jobs, value "being" well over "doing" or "having" will appear.


List of Participants:

  • ACCHIONI Guido (C1), BAEZ SEARA David (S4), BARBERO Mirco, BRINCAT Ivan (B2), DORLO Carlo (R1), FERNANDEZ-VILLACANAS Jose (F1), FREDERIX Florent (D4), GUARNERI Elena  (EXT), HALLANTIE Timo (F6), LASO BALLESTEROS Isidro (D2), MARKOT Elisabeth (A1), MASCAGNI Matteo (F2), NASARRE DE LETOSA Fabio (A2), PHELIPPEAU Julien (R1), RAVELO GONZALEZ Ana Miriam (S1), REIBE Thomas (F3), RIVIERE-OSIPOV Alis Irena (C1), SIREN Jarkko (F3), TARAKTCHIEVA-KOUMALAGOV Siana (B), VARGIOLU Cristina (A2), ZAMPARA Athina (F3), RUNGE Philipp (A1), VAN DE VELDE Walter (F2), DE TOUZALIN Aymard (F2)
  • ACCORDINO Franco (TF), BEZZI Margot (TF), FERREIRA Afonso (TF), MICAS Christian(TF), WATSON BROWN Adam (TF), HAHN Martin (TF), UBELHOR Martin (TF)
  • KLEINSCHMAGER Mathieu (PL Team-DG HR), IANOSI Carmen (PL Team-DG RTD)
  • Digital Futures gratefully acknowledges the contribution of the DG HR Participatory Leadership team led by KLEINSCHMAGER Mathieu.


Date & Time: 
Monday, 5 March, 2012 - 09:00 to 13:30
Event Type: 

Participated events

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