Participation and Interaction in Foresight
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Participation and Interaction in Foresight

Dialogue, Dissemination and Visions

Edited by Kristian Borch, Sandra Dingli and Michael Søgaard Jørgensen

This illuminating book combines theory and practice to analyse the experiences and impacts of foresight activities in various European countries. It includes case studies with a focus on different societal issues including national development, science and technology, and sustainable development.
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Chapter 17: Futur – the research dialogue in Germany

Edgar Göll


The German Foresight process ‘Futur’ was a continuation of earlier selection activities to prioritize important future demands for research policies during the 1990s. Futur was characterized by a broad participation of almost 1500 experts during a time span of six years. It was intended to be an open search process without any predetermined range of issues and priorities. Organizing such a complex communication activity and such a complicated configuration of participants and their numerous interests and perspectives was a very ambitious and challenging endeavour. During the process several tools and approaches were used in order to define the future needs of society on a broad basis. A wide variety of target groups were involved in the process in different stages and on different occasions. Due to this society-oriented approach, more aspects and views of the social sciences were recognized in the discussions than ever before. One of the major intentions of ‘Futur’ was to broaden the traditional decision-making process for the selection and the setting of priorities for research programmes of the German government, more specifically the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

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