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Higher School of Economics became a coordinator of the International Foresight Centers Network

National Research University Higher School of Economics (HSE) and Brazilian Center for Strategic Studies and Management in Science, Technology and Innovation (CGEE) founded an International Foresight Centers Network. The Letter of Intent was signed on November 20, 2015, on the concluding day of HSE V Annual International Academic Conference on Foresight and STI Policy.

 Letter of intent

The Network will bring together world’s leading foresight centers, universities and knowledge-based institutions for performing research, sharing and developing state-of-the-art methodologies and best practices of conducting futures studies, and implementing joint initiatives in the area of long-term S&T foresight and STI priority setting.     

Higher School of Economics, represented by the Institute for Statistical Studies and Economics of Knowledge and its International Research and Educational Foresight Center, will act as Network Coordinator. The Network will focus on the following activities:

  • undertaking joint research in foresight and long-term S&T forecasting;
  • delivering training and other capacity-building measures (both full-time and distance learning);
  • organising scientific and brokerage events;
  • providing expert and analytical support for forward-looking decision and policy making;
  • providing internships for junior researchers and PhD students, and others.

The International Foresight Centers Network will operate a dedicated Internet portal and a data base, which will connect the unique repositories of knowledge created by the consortium members, while linking them with other available international resources – iKnow, FORwiki, online foresight guide FOR-LEARN, European Foresight Platform EFP, and European Foresight Monitoring Network.

The need for pooling resources, knowledge and competences in the area of foresight is primarily due to the complexity of foresight exercises, necessity of linking key stakeholders, numerous knowledge-holders, and society. Over a dozen such networks have been created worldwide in the recent years. 

 

Selected foresight networks

 

Latin-American Network of Centres for Science and Technology Studies — RELACYT (19851986)

 

Eurasian Virtual Centre on Technology Foresight — EVC (2005 under development)

 

European Science and Technology Foresight Knowledge Sharing Platform — KSP-Forlearn (20052008)

 

European Foresight Monitoring Network — EFMN (2005–2009)

 

European Foresight Platform — EFP (20102012)

 

International Foresight Academy — IFA (2012–2015)

 

European Techno-Economic Policy Support — ETEPS (2004 ongoing)

 

SITRA National Foresight Network (2006 ongoing)

 

Joint Institute for Innovation Policy — JIIP (2012 ongoing)

 

APEC Technology Foresight Network — ATFN (2001 ongoing)

 

Foresight Wiki — FORwiki (2010 ongoing)

 

The Millennium Project (1996 ongoing)

 

Interconnecting Knowledge — iKnow (2011 ongoing)

 

Foresight Canada (2006 ongoing)

The common features of the successful networks are the availability of strong anchor knowledge institutions; capacity to acquire, treat and disseminate meta-knowledge; institutionalized virtual entity and connected data bases; use of advanced computer aided communication.

Brazilian Center for Strategic Studies and Management in Science, Technology and Innovation is HSE’s long-standing partner. In 2012–2015, the two organisations together participated in FP7 project “International Foresight Academy”, which represents another successful example of a networking project in the area. In June 2013, the Parties signed a Memorandum of Cooperation, by which they broadened the thematic scope of their collaboration by stressing mutual interest in cooperative bilateral actions in fields such as STI policy and foresight studies; evaluation of  economic and social impact of STI policies, programs, projects, and public institutions; strategic planning in STI. In June 2015, the HSE and CGEE organized a joint Russia – Brazil Summer School on Foresight and STI Policy.

The launch of the International Foresight Centers Network will bring the HSE-CGEE partnership to a new level, particularly in view of Russia’s current presidency in BRICS and related S&T initiatives. It is planned that the International Foresight Centers Network will be presented at XVII April International Academic Conference on Economic and Social Development which will take place at HSE, Moscow on April 1922, 2016.