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Future Foresight: Understanding today’s and tomorrow’s driving forces 

Our Future Foresight modules support decision-makers in successfully navigating and proactively shaping the future.

High degrees of volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity are the common characteristics of our current corporate world. In this environment and on a daily basis, decision-makers are confronted with challenging choices that massively affect our future - regardless if they are from the public or private sector. Building strategies that navigate the resulting turbulence successfully is an obvious challenge. Future Foresight combines a variety of individual but interconnected methodologies to empower your organization in analysing und understanding today’s and tomorrow’s driving forces and to build future-proof strategies for your organization´s individual risks and opportunities.

Global and local events and crises do not happen in a vacuum. They are highly interconnected and trigger other previously unseen dynamics and developments. The resulting complexity makes a focus on relevant factors and developments more difficult and can shift decision-makers’ attention away from what really matters towards the noise of buzzwords.

In order to navigate through this turbulent landscape, it is essential for stakeholders and decision-makers to understand the future as an emerging entity, identify key future drivers, challenges and opportunities and prepare for the storms to come. This is where Future Foresight comes in. Often, traditional business methodologies, such as quantitative forecasting, are ill-equipped to capture today’s uncertainty and the existing complexity. Our four innovative Future Foresight modules support stakeholders in engaging in long-term thinking in a time where focusing on the short-term can be fatal. All modules are interconnectable in a multitude of ways depending on your organization´s individual project goal, scope and focus.

360° Trendscaping:

We will develop a holistic individualized landscape of future variables surrounding your organization and document their impact on your ecosystem. This individual map of driving forces and trends helps your organization to make strategic planning more forward-looking and future-proof.

Wild Card Futureproofing:

Often, low probability high impact events (“wild cards”) cause the biggest turbulences for your organization. Using prevalent Foresight methodologies, we develop a chart of potential wild cards on a predefined general, sector-specific or individual level. Wild Card Futureproofing supports your organization in defining vulnerabilities and risks that usually fall below the radar of traditional methods to significantly increase your resilience to system-changing turbulence.

Future Foresight Factory:

Reaction on future events require an agile and innovative, but constructive and thought-through response. The Future Foresight Factory provides a custom-made interactive digital or physical format to engage with the future and the uncertainty around it. Bringing together tried and tested Future Foresight methodologies and innovative tools, we enable stringent and clear out of the box future thinking in a stimulating environment. This way, you can spotlight the most relevant future developments and their implications for your organization to determine strategic pathways.

Future Benchmarking and Roadmapping:

With the myriad of fast-paced future developments, making informed choices on forward-looking priorities is hard. However, the risk of making uncalculated choices is high. Future benchmarking and roadmapping provide a Future Maturity Assessment that gives you concrete insights into where your organization stands in regard to relevant future developments. Being equipped with a future readiness barometer based on key future indicators and a resulting future roadmap, allows your organization to set in the direction you want to move in for a successful future.

While all these modules individually help to prepare your organization for what is to come, they unfold their full potential when being combined. In cooperation with Deloitte’s Center for the Long View (CLV), our scenario analysis experts can further support you to develop scenario-based futureproof strategies.

Selected past projects

We have applied our Future Foresight expertise to a number of different topics and organizations. Please find short descriptions of selected reference projects below:

Future of Digital Trust

Digital Trust plays a vital role in tomorrow’s digital world and is the foundation for a sustainable, coherent digital environment. The study was guided by and built around two focal questions: “What drivers and trends are forming the future of digital trust in society and economy until 2035?” and “How can we make cyber security an enabler for a sustainable and trustworthy digital transformation?” To answer these questions, we used AI-based research tools to identify 143 relevant drivers, which were clustered into 15 overarching trends. Building on that, we derived eight holistic trend implications supplemented further by more industry-specific impulses from our Deloitte Cyber Team.

Future of Cyber Risk

Guided by the focal question “What will the future of Cyber Risk in Europe in 2035 look like?” we developed four scenarios to guide stakeholders and decision-makers from the private and public sector on how to be at the forefront of managing Cyber Risks. We generated AI-based insights into relevant driving forces and trends around Cyber Risk and created a list of 100 driving forces as well as an expert-rating of these forces according to their impact and uncertainty. In our published study, we take you on a journey through these four alternative worlds and explain our tried and tested scenario methodology.

European Cyber Defense

The goal of our European Cyber Defense report was to offer a comprehensive overview and analysis of existing national cyber strategies in a first step. Additionally, it compares the European strategies to those of China, Russia and the US. As part of this project, we generated AI-based insights into future driving forces and a holistic list of 102 drivers that were subsequently rated by our Cyber defense experts according to their impact an uncertainty. Based on these outcomes, we developed four possible future scenarios guided by the focal question “What could the cyber security landscape in Europe look like in 2030?

Future of Digital Conflicts in Geopolitics

On behalf of the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) we developed four possible scenarios focusing on the role the European Union, China and non-governmental actors. Guided by the focal question “What could future digital conflicts in geopolitics look like in 2035?” we used AI-based insights to create a holistic list of 104 driving forces and asked experts to rate those forces according to their impact and uncertainty.

Future of Germany (FES)

On behalf of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES), a study on the future of society and economy in Germany was conducted by developing four scenarios that represent alternative answers to the question of what society and economy in Germany could look like in 2035. As part of the project, we generated AI-based results on future trends and drivers resulting in a holistic drivers list of 108 factors and asked experts to rate these drivers according to their impact and uncertainty.

Future of Germany

Utilizing the broad Deloitte network of public and private decision-makers, we developed four potential scenarios on the question of what the future of the economy and society in Germany could look like in 2035? We created a holistic list of 104 driving forces that was generated with the help of AI-based insights as well as an expert-rating of the drivers according to their impact and uncertainty.

Future of Digital Transformation in the EU

In cooperation with a French academic association, we focused on the question of “What could the future of digital transformation in the EU look like in 2035?” and developed four scenarios highlighting challenges and opportunities for stakeholders and decision-makers that want to drive the European digital transformation. As part of this project, we generated AI-based insights into the key driving forces of digital transformation and incorporated the results into a holistic list of 91 driving forces that were rated by an interdisciplinary group of experts according to their impact and uncertainty.

Future of AI in Society

As AI plays an increasingly prominent role in our world, we cooperated with a French academic association and developed four possible scenarios on how AI could impact European society until 2035. In this context, we explored challenges and opportunities for a successful human-machine partnership in the future. AI-based insights helped us to create a holistic list of 90 drivers that were subsequently rated by an interdisciplinary group of experts according to their impact and uncertainty.

All listed scenario analysis projects were conducted in cooperation with the Center for the Long View.


The future is not predetermined but evolves dynamically. Our Future Foresight offerings prepare you for future turbulence. Additionally, Deloitte’s scenario experts from the CLV can support you to explore a range of plausible and alternative developments and empower you to build future-proof strategies. Please get in contact if you would like to know more about our services.

Your Contacts

Annina Lux

Manager | Risk Advisory
anlux@deloitte.de
+49 30 254685131