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News & Press: APF News

APF Chair's COVID-19 Update: April 2020

Friday, March 27, 2020  
Posted by: Jay Gary
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"Futurists Act to Advert Coronavirus Crisis"


Coronavirus COVID-19

Over the past 60 days we have witnessed nations fall like dominoes to an invisible virus killer--China, Korea, Italy, Japan, Iran, Israel, Spain, UK and now USA. In February, our first reaction as futurists was "we told you so!"--as all professional futurists carry a pandemic card in our game decks. But sadly by early March, we realized the Coronavirus was much worse that we thought. COVID-19 was infecting our minds, not just our lungs. Now as we stand on the edge of a global recession. I am proud to see our 500 APF members jump into action to help everyone advert the harsh realities of this COVID-19 pandemic.  -- Jay Gary

In keeping with the Chinese word for "crisis"-- representing both "danger" and "opportunity, APF members have been helping the public take decisive action to mitigate this global pandemic. Catch our growing APF page that highlights our collective work. Submit your news there so we can feature you!

During 2020 APF will convene its members on the First-Friday of each month at 12:00 noon and 5 pm London time to look at pressing issues related to foresight practice. Our April 3rd topic is "Coronavirus Crisis: How are Futurists Responding?" in Asia, Africa, Europe and the Americas. This is a members-only event on Zoom. So mark your calendar--April 3, May 1, June 5th and so forth. First-Friday meetings will last 60-minutes, and include discussion about the use of futures methods and foresight practices as change agents during this time of global pandemic. A replay of the opening talk at 12 noon will be played at 5:00 pm London time, followed by discussion, for those in earlier time zones. Register now as a member benefit:

To serve you better during this global pandemic the APF Board just formed an internal "Rapid Response Team" to host one-off video discussions, to craft position statements, to encourage regional meetings, and to enhance networking among members over this crisis on our member-only platform and Twitter. Feed your ideas and initiatives to APF Board members, whether Bryan Alexander, Rebecca Ryan, Terry Grim, Tricia Lustig or Peter Hayward.  

As we began this new year APF announced plans were in the making for a "Future of Experience" global gathering in Toronto come Oct 1-3. Things looked great. By February 19th the U.S. stock market hit an all-time high. APF's Jean-Pierre Lacroix, our Toronto host and I were finalizing hotel contracts, when the 2020 stock market crash began on February 20th. Despite a contract extension to the end of March, the APF Board decided it would postpone its October global gathering until 2021, and in its place host a 2-day live stream members event in September 2020 that would connect our members across various continents in collaborative ways. To support preparations with ideas, please contact Marius Oosthuizen from Johannesburg, South Africa. 

Last year APF launched its' online platform to build a full-featured back-end member-only community behind our front-end public website, to capture member profiles, provide private Forums, and to organize special interest groups by topic or region. Members can now update their own profile and connect to other members through private messaging. Download APF's "10 Steps to Set Up your APF Profile" for instructions on how to get started in posting to our daily Feed, in subscribing to our member-wide Forum, and messaging other members through connections. 

Are you interested in what our emerging APF thought leaders are writing on? Catch APF's bi-weekly blog posts by this year's emerging fellows. Our theme is "Our Geo-Political Futures." Fellows post on Tuesday and Friday on the ideas shared in APF exchanges, at events, and from their work. Since 2018, the program has been curated by Stephen Aguilar-Millan, Director of Research, European Futures Observatory (EURO). The Emerging Fellows Program is designed to recognize promising new futurists and mentor them through a one-year project that involves writing on strategic foresight issues. By the end of the project the posts will be collated into print form by EURO for publication. 

Our next APF Connect for new members is Wednesday, April 1st, 1 pm New York time. If you joined APF recently, you are welcome to attend this virtual meeting hosted by APF Board members to get introduced to the association. Register now:

Across Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas, APF is respected for its professionalism and leadership of the futures field. We are the leading credentialing organization for foresight professionals. Be proud that you are part of a global community that "Works the Future" – for everyone, everywhere, for a world in crisis.

Jay Gary, PhD, APF, Board Chair