Future Geopolitical Scenarios, Their Dominant Schools of Thought and the Impact Thereof on the Promotion of Deep Space Exploration

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F. Ceyssens et al. (2014), JBIS, 67, pp.440-446

Refcode: 2014.67.440
Keywords: Interstellar, space exploration philosophy, future scenarios, future studies, scenario method

Scenario planning is a method in which key - but uncontrollable - driving forces that shape the future are identified and narrated in a scenario which is then used for strategic planning. The intention of this paper is to formulate recommended strategies for advocating deep space exploration projects in a range of possible scenarios. This paper is based on future scenarios from two well-known groups in the field of futures studies, the US National Intelligence Council and the Global Policy Group lead by the Tellus Institute (Boston) and the Stockholm Environment Institute. First, the scenarios are briefly described together with the dominant philosophical and political schools of thought they would entail. Then, conclusions are drawn about the challenges and opportunities for deep space exploration projects in each of the scenarios. Also, the preferred strategies that advocates of deep space exploration could use to promote such projects in each of the respective scenarios are discussed. In the tradition of scenario planning works, the paper ends with a few written-out narratives of a potential future.

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