IT Tools for Technology Foresight

Chirca Ovidiu, Constantin-Bala Zamfirescu


The challenges of broadband society amplify the need of foresight research for designing science and technology policies. The success of a foresight study depends on bringing together different stakeholders, building consensus among divergent views and committing the policy makers to relevant action plan. The paper argues the use of advanced collaborative tools to support vision-creation activities. In particular, a special emphasize will be given to Group Support Systems (GSS) - a collection of software tools successfully used in the last two decades for strategic planning in industry. In addition to overcoming the temporal and spatial limitations of conventional meetings, GSS gives the possibility to have anonymous inputs that avoid individual inhibition and groupthink. The insights are drawn from our experience of using GSS technology in the FISTERA project - “Future Prospects in Romania: Scenarios for the Development of the Knowledge Society in Romania”. For designing the scenarios we carried out an expert survey biased towards a structured brainstorming coupled with rating. The preliminary results identified the most relevant drivers (trends, issues and events) and clusters of views considered to be critical to the knowledge society development in Romania.


group decision support, foresight studies

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