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FEBRUARY 2024 - APF's Chair Report on the Strategic Plan

Updated: Mar 15

Hello Futurist Family!


I am happy to share with you the progress we have made for tstehe past month, and I would like to thank everyone for their support in attending our events, especially our Townhall Gathering where we discussed the new Strategic Plan and what we have in store for the APF.


As we venture into the diverse landscapes of potential futures, the APF Strategic Plan (2024-2026) stands as a testament to our unwavering commitment to foresight and futures thinking. Crafted through collaborative efforts, this plan reflects APF's dedication to shaping futures that are sustainable, equitable, and responsive to our ever-evolving world.


It's a roadmap that underscores our focus on foresight and futures thinking, aiming to nurture resilient and thriving futures for all. As we embrace this journey, let's explore the vast possibilities and shape the multitude of futures together.


 

Content

REPORT ON THE STRATEGIC PLAN


REPORT ON OUR INITIATIVES


OUTLOOK


 

🚀 Town hall Recap

Our recent Town Hall Gathering was an invigorating dive into the 2024-2026 Strategic Plan for the Association of Professional Futurists (APF). We discussed the paramount importance of promoting foresight and futures thinking, the pivotal role of professional Futurists, and initiatives for enhancing member value and engagement. 





🌐 APF’s Key Goals

Our key goals encompass a broad spectrum aimed at propelling the field of foresight and futures thinking forward. First, we strive to promote foresight and futures thinking as indispensable tools for decision-making, fostering their adoption in both public and private sectors to navigate an ever-changing landscape. Embracing diversity and inclusivity lies at the heart of our mission, as we endeavor to enrich the foresight community with a myriad of perspectives, ensuring inclusive practices that amplify voices often marginalized. 


Professional development stands as a cornerstone, driving our commitment to continuous improvement and the cultivation of capacities and methodologies that push boundaries and inspire innovation. Lastly, we hold ourselves to the highest ethical standards, prioritizing the well-being of current and future generations, thus ensuring that our endeavors are guided by principles that transcend time and circumstance.



Promote Foresight and Futures Thinking

Elevating the value of foresight and futures thinking for decision-making in both the public and private sectors.



Diversity and Inclusivity in Foresight Practice

Enrich the foresight community with new, diverse and multiple perspectives and inclusive practices.



Professional Development

Embrace continuous improvement and development of capacities and new methods.



Ethical Standards 

Uphold high ethical standards considering well-being across generations.

🔍 APF's Member Value Pillars

In my January Chair’s Report I shared with you our new Member Value Pillars. In the Townhall Gathering we discussed what these would look like at an operational level. For 2024-2026, we hope to be able to achieve the initiatives we have laid out under each pillar.


Pillar 1: Networking and Community Building

To create vibrant, engaging platforms and events for members to connect and collaborate.

  • Community Platforms (Listserv, WhatsApp, Discord)

  • Members Roulette

  • Conferences

  • Regional Futures Festivals

  • Annual Awards Gala

  • Bi-Annual Global Gatherings


Pillar 2: Capacity Development and Learning

To provide members with cutting-edge educational resources and learning opportunities.

  • First Fridays Webinars

  • Emerging Conversations

  • Futures & Foresight Wiki


Pillar 3: Research and Insights

To be a leading source of innovative foresight research and publications.

  • Partner Research

  • Dubai Futures Foundation (DFF)

  • Member Insights

  • Emerging Driver Report

  • Global Foresight Report


Pillar 4: Career Support and Professional Development

To provide members with robust career development resources and opportunities.

  • Emerging Fellows Program

  • Compass

  • Regional ProDevs

  • Advanced Fellowship Program

  • Futures-X

  • Awards

  • IF Awards

  • Student Awards

  • Emeritus Awards

  • Cindy Frewen Awards

  • Corporate Awards

Pillar 5: Public Relations and Media Outreach

To raise the profile of the foresight profession and APF members in the media and public domain.

  • Monthly Newsletter

  • Monthly Chair’s report

  • APF Book Club

  • APF Press Releases

  • APF PR for Futures


Pillar 6: Advocacy and Representation

To advocate for the role of futurists and influence policies impacting the profession.

  • Global Partnerships

  • Manifesto

  • Futurist in Residence Program

  • Government Representation


🌍 APF Governance and Inclusivity

We have also developed a new Governance Model modernizing our approach, moving beyond traditional hierarchies towards a model that champions collaboration and engagement. Our current Board is composed of 12 dedicated members, with 7 serving on the Executive Committee. Transparency is paramount and we are holding ourselves to the highest ethical standards; each member now provides a commitment letter outlining their contributions for the year, ensuring clarity of roles and fostering accountability.


Executive Committee members oversee one of the six Member Value Pillars, while Regional Directors facilitate local initiatives, promoting accessibility and responsiveness. This approach aims to create pathways for members to actively engage with our organization, regardless of their geographical location, hopefully fostering new leaders within the organization who can eventually take a place on the Board.


Furthermore, operational support structures ensure professional service delivery, while Member-driven Initiatives empower regions to tailor activities to local needs.


We also have the Nominating Committee chaired by Cindy Frewen, which ensures that nominated Board members are able to respond to the pressing needs of the organization, and the Ethics Committee, which will help us to establish a Code of Ethics and foster ethical discussions.



To learn more about what each member of the Board is in charge of, you may view the Townhall Gathering presentation.


📣 Encouragement for Engagement and Feedback

We encourage you to watch the Townhall Gathering recording, and look through the Townhall Gathering presentation deck. We also welcome any questions you may have about the Strategic Plan, in the newly launched APF Discord Server.




 


🌟 Member-DRIVEN Initiatives

We also have several member-led initiatives that you can participate in. We have Foresight Evaluation led by Annette Gardner, Futurist-in-Residence led by Elatia Abate, and the Code of Ethics led by Terry Grim. Aside from our existing initiatives, we are also launching several new ones that are in need of your support. You may signify your interest to support or lead these initiatives through the form below. 


We will organize a meeting to sit down and discuss with you how we can move forward with these initiatives, or any new ones that you may have in mind.


These initiatives are:

  • Online Learning & Webinars - organizing learning events and webinars for APF members and the public

  • Gatherings - organizing regional in-person gatherings

  • Futures-X - launching a new speaking platform for Futurists

  • Regional ProDevs - organizing regional Professional Development seminars

  • Manifesto - composing a futures manifesto for the APF

  • Book Club - organizing a futures book club 

  • Diversity & Inclusion - creating processes to ensure that the APF has diversity and inclusion at the core of its operations

  • Advanced Fellowship - organizing an Advanced Fellowship Programme for members, and establishing a mentoring network

  • Government Relations - advocating for the recognition of futurists and their potential contributions to government and policymaking



💬WhatsApp Group and Discord Server

Your Community Hub


We've created these channels with one goal in mind: to foster a vibrant community where APF members can connect, share insights, and collaborate. 


Join us on WhatsApp and Discord to:


🔹 Network with fellow members

🔹 Participate in discussions

🔹 Share valuable resources

🔹 Stay updated on APF news and events


While these channels are open to non-members, there are special channels in the Discord server for members-only, so don’t forget to verify your account through this form.





🤝 Our Dynamic Collaborations & Partnerships


APF is proud to be at the forefront of creating impactful collaborations that are shaping the future of foresight and futures studies.


Women Who Future(s)


​Women Who Future(s) emerged from the desire to create safe spaces that promote and celebrate the work of women engaged in thought-provoking discussions in the future(s) and foresight field. Here, diversity, inclusion, and intersectionality take center stage. This event advocates for transforming the field to be more inclusive and supportive while also recognizing how women bring unique perspectives to their practices.


👋 Who can attend?

This event is open to anyone willing to embrace uncertainty, welcome a sense of discomfort, cross-pollinate knowledge, and promote diversity and inclusion—always with respect and an open mind.


😎 How to participate?

You can RSVP for the two events here:




Future Days in Lisbon

This event is not just a gathering; it's a festival where futures and systemic thinkers, innovation-seekers, creatives, purpose-driven organizations, and policymakers converge. The focus is on collectively creating futures that enhance urban living and build equitable societies, leveraging and transcending technology. It's a unique opportunity for our APF members, who receive an exclusive discount on the prices. Be sure to take advantage of the 25% discount for our members.


😎 How to participate?

For more details on the discounts and to register, visit: APF Member-Only Events


🌁 How to connect in Lisbon?

Join our WhatsApp Group to meet and stay in touch in Lisbon:




Imagine 2080 Podcast

What are the possibilities for Canada in 2080? What kind of Canada do we want to live in? The Imagine 2080 podcast looks at the research, possibilities, and ambitions that could steer Canada forward.


This podcast is made possible by the Future of Canada Project and is produced by The Walrus Lab.


🎧 How to listen to the Podcast?

Listen and subscribe now: https://lnkfi.re/imagine2080 





🧭 Compass: Collapse Issue Available Now

In the latest issue of Compass, leading foresight professionals from around the world contribute their thoughts about collapse in several thought-provoking articles. In addition, this issue offers a range of articles on other futures-related topics, and it offers how-to articles and book reviews, as well. Everything you need to expand your thinking and enhance your skills as a professional futurist.


Thank you to Stephen Dupont, editor, and Harmanjot Kaur, design director, for bringing this latest issue of Compass together.




 

🎬 Past APF Events: Access Recordings


🔈APF First Friday for January featured Elatia Abate, where she shared pathways to securing a coveted role as a futurist within leading organizations.


🎥 The recording of the session is available for members here.


If there are people you are interested in hearing from, or topics you are interested in hearing about for an APF First Friday please fill out this Suggestion Form! 💭💭💭



If you would like to be featured during a First Friday session to share something you are working on with other members, you can also fill out this interest form and we will get in touch with you! 🗣️🗣️🗣️



Did you miss any other First Friday Recording? Watch them in the Members Area:


Watch the Townhall Recording, in which you can find more information on the Strategic Plan of the APF throughout 2024-2026. 









Visit the APF YouTube Channel for more Videos


📅 Upcoming APF Events: Mark your Calendar

To keep updated with all the upcoming events, join our Discord channel and subscribe to the Member Calendar.



Oceania Open House: Our Regional Director for Oceania Steve Tighe is organizing an open hub for futurists in Oceania on March 20 at 8PM Sydney time. In this Open Hub you can meet with futurists from your region, learn more about what is in store for your region, and network! Register here! 



Member Roulette: Get ready to rekindle connections with our unique Member Roulette event! This 1:1 speed networking experience is designed to rapidly connect members in a series of brief, focused conversations. It's the perfect way to meet new colleagues, exchange quick insights, and spark potential collaborations within the APF community. Member Roulette offers a dynamic and efficient way to expand your professional network and engage with diverse perspectives from the world of foresight. Register here for the Mar 21st Member Roulette.



First Friday: On March 22, we are grateful to have former Board member Richard Yonck in his session Love and Foresight in the Age of TechnoGrift as he will be presenting material based on the book he is currently writing about the many challenges society faces with the ongoing development of technology. Register now!

 

🌍  What's Next: March & April at APF

March: Expect a surge in our marketing and management efforts as we fine-tune our operations and outreach for maximal impact.

  • Refining the Marketing Funnel: We're optimizing our marketing strategies to effectively reach and engage potential members.

  • Launch of our New Member Initiatives: Embark on a Journey of Collaboration and Innovation with us.

  • Rekindle Partnerships & Organisational Memberships: we aim to strengthen the value for our organisational members as well as renew some of our existing and start new global and regional partnerships. If you want to partner with the APF, reach out to: contact@apf.org.

April: Month of strategic developments and community enhancements, focusing on:

  1. Regional Engagements with Members: Strengthening local networks for broader regional engagement and impact​​.

  2. Revisiting Membership Levels and Application Process: Optimizing the application process and restructuring the membership levels to become more inclusive and accessible.

  3. Improving Payment Processes for Memberships and Renewals: Streamlining operational efficiencies.

  4. Growing the Discord Community: Transitioning to use Discord as a key channel for communication and collaboration among members​​.


📣 Join the Foresight Revolution

  • Futures Thinkers Wanted: If you're not yet a member, there's no better time to join our community of visionary change-makers. Join Us

  • Member's Location, Pin Your Location: Pin your location let other members know where you're making a difference. Member Area


✨ Closing Thoughts: From NOW to the future


As we conclude this edition of the Chair's Report, let's remember that our journey from now into the multiple futures ahead is not just a path we observe, but one we actively shape. Every step we take, every collaboration we forge, and every insight we gain contributes to more resilient and adaptive futures. Let's embrace the diverse potentials of tomorrow with futures thinking, creativity, and a steadfast commitment to making a positive impact. Together, we are not just anticipating futures; we are actively participating in their creation​​.


CHEERS, TANJA

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