Scenarios for Success: Turning Insights in to Action

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Bill Sharpe, Kees van der Heijden
John Wiley & Sons, Jul 31, 2008 - Business & Economics - 434 pages
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Properly researched and intelligently deployed, scenario planningis today’s most powerful tool for understanding and preparingfor an uncertain future. Yet it remains a niche approach, poorlyunderstood by leaders at large. To bring it into the strategymainstream, leaders need advice on how to turn concepts (scenarios)into actions (strategy).

Scenarios for Success delivers a unique and coherentaccount of the state of the scenario planning art. It is aimedparticularly at those trying to implement its findings. Striking abalance between theory and practice, the contributors show how andwhy the core techniques of scenario thinking have endured and arestill valuable, while bringing new tools and processes that keepscenario planning in touch with modern realities.


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Part I Origins Navigating with Invisible Islands
1 Conversations with Peter Schwartz and Napier Collyns
2 Professional Dreamers The Future in the Past of Scenario Planning
Part II Scenarios in the World of Business
3 Scenarios and Innovation
4 Scenarios to Develop Strategic Options A New Interactive Role for Scenarios in Strategy
5 Deepening Futures with System Structure
6 From Signals to Decisions
9 Viewing Futures Network Collaborative Learning and Innovation at Rabobank
10 Facilitating Scenario Development Process Some Lessons for Facilitators
11 Appreciating the Future
12 Building a Comprehensive Strategic Future Management System A Future Map Approach
13 Acting on the Future
14 Backwards to the Future Scenarios as Routines for Organizational Health
Concluding Remarks

7 When Strangers Meet Scenarios and the Legal Profession
8 The Power of Narrative
Part III Scenarios in the World of Management

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About the author (2008)

Bill Sharpe is an independent researcher in science,technology and society. He was a research director at HewlettPackard Laboratories where he led research into everydayapplications of digital technology. He introduced scenario methodsto HP for long-range research and business management, andpioneered the use of scenario methods for supporting businessinnovation. In 1999 he co-founded an innovation and consultingcompany, The Appliance Studio, and now specializes in long rangetechnology studies for business strategy and public policyforesight. He has worked extensively for the UK government’sForesight Programme in areas such as Cognitive Systems, Cybertrust,and Intelligent Infrastructure. With a background in computing andpsychology, he is particularly interested in drawing on leadingedge research in cognition and systems thinking to find new ways oftackling complex problems. He works independently and as anassociate with several organizations in the futures field.

Kees van der Heijden is an Associate Fellow of TempletonCollege, University of Oxford, and a Visiting Professor at theNetherlands Business School, Nijenrode University. He is alsoEmeritus Professor of the University of Strathclyde Graduate Schoolof Business, Glasgow, where he has taught General and StrategicManagement since 1990. In addition, he is a co-founder of theGlobal Business Network. Before joining Strathclyde, he was incharge of scenario planning at Royal Dutch/Shell, as head of theGroup’s Business Environment Division. This involved advisingtop management on strategy, as well as development of the processof scenario planning in which Shell has taken a worldwide leadingrole.

He specializes in scenario planning, strategic change andinstitutional strategic management processes, and has consultedwidely in these areas.

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