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A critical analysis on the use of scenario planning as a policy making tool for resilience

Georgiou, P. and Pantos, S. (2022) A critical analysis on the use of scenario planning as a policy making tool for resilience. Sentio (4). pp. 76-84. ISSN 2632-2455

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Futures thinking ‘allow us to anticipate dangerous trends, identify desirable futures and respond appropriately’ (Riedy, 2009:40). This argument seems to be even more prominent now, after the global financial crisis of 2008, Covid-19, together with the rapid technological change which generates increased uncertainty, causing a concern for the future. Based on a literature review, the paper discusses the potential contribution of scenario planning as a practical tool to understand uncertainty and test for resilience, in helping policymakers design better policies. This research highlights the importance of scenario design, development and implementation as a tool for resilience testing. Recent examples on scenario application are discussed, capturing the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and sustainability, in addition to financial crises and shocks, catastrophes and cyber/technological risks. The paper adopts an interdisciplinary approach commenting on the value and use of scenario planning from different angles in relation to resilience, presenting an overview of scenario applications by type of resilience. The focus is placed on UK policy making approaches for the period post the 2008 global financial crisis until the coronavirus pandemic. It adopts the position that the contribution of scenario planning as a practical tool in policymaking in relation to resilience testing is a double-edged sword. This is because while there is a great value of using scenario planning to inform policymaking in the face of growing uncertainty and complexity, adopting scenario planning does not result in automatic gains. Therefore, one should be aware of the associated challenges such as different biases and issues of inclusivity and exclusivity within the process.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Law
ID Code:109151


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