The efficacy of futures studies in brokering change
chapterposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Patrick Keleher
We strive to equitably equip and empower individuals to be active citizens in brokering sustainable organisations and societies. We empower them by the manner in which we engage them as people who understand embedded notions of the inevitability of change, recognise the necessity of individual, organisational and social learning; and engage them as participants in change processes. Through our proactive interactions or our passivity, we need to appreciate that we each have a stake in the future and we each do influence the future. Futures Studies, as a set of established approaches, schools of thought ordisciplines, explores the continuum—past, present, future—to develop frameworks to support an evolving understanding and a dynamic actioning of the interplays of ambiguity, complexity and connectivity as multidimensional aspects of our lives, our civilisation, our technology, our interfaces with the environmental and our ever-evolving culture. In so doing, it promotes a systems or trans-disciplinary thinking approach that places sustainable practices at the centre of strategic solutions. Futures Studies can equip us to broker change and act as enabling agents. It can make us more insightful and foresighted in our consideration and design of multi-faceted sustainable strategies for addressing multidimensional issues, problems and challenges. It is within dialogue about possible, plausible, preferable and probable futures that sustainable change can be brokered and enacted. Central Queensland University as a learning organisation itself, and as a teaching and learning provider to its staff and student cohort (local, regional, national, international), embraces its role as a broker of change through a variety of future-looking processes and techniques. The ideals of grooming staff and graduates who are change agents with a lifelong and lifewide love of learning, with a forward-looking perspective, is encapsulated in the university motto of Doctrina Perpetua.