Dutch Future Society plays The future game

Freija van Duijne's picture

More than thirty futurists, strategy experts and trend analysts gathered in Kasteel Groeneveld, Baarn, to play The Future Game with Future IQ. This board game is about regional development in a fictional rural area. In the game, you and your team make policy decisions up until 2030. Every decision will lead to a new scenario, where also external events have been taken place. After the last decision, the team looks back on their decision making strategy and reflects on the final scenario in the game.

Kasteel Groeneveld Baarn
Kasteel Groeneveld Baarn, the Netherlands

The game is normally been used as part of a planning process. At the start of such a process, the game acts as a primer for strategic thinking. At the end of the process, it also serves as a reflection tool.

David Beurle CEO of Future IQ
David Beurle CEO of Future IQ

For the futurists gathered here, it was an interesting (one and a half hours) deep dive into the game. All very experienced in foresight projects, their questions were focused and meaningful. For instance, they wanted to know about the impact of external global events on the decisions at hand. Also, they wanted to know if such a game could be used in society to discuss the impact of new technology and risks of infrastructural projects like carbon storage.

Freija van Duijne, president of the Dutch Future Society
Freija van Duijne, president of the Dutch Future Society

As true scenario experts, they had many questions on the scenarios underlying the game. To me, that reflects the evolutionary process that scenario thinking is experiencing right now. The two axes model is no longer taken for granted. Lastly, there were questions about the group process and the risk of group think. That is probably one of the strengths of The Future Game. It allows people to experience their decision making tendencies. And it reveals that also futurists default on the short term solutions, when under time pressure (as in the game).
A small impression of the session on Youtube

This blog was originally posted at www.dutchfuturesociety.com