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Pardee Logo International Futures at the Pardee Center

International Futures Help System


International Futures (IFs) is a tool for thinking about long-term global futures. It assists with:

  • Understanding the state of the world
  • Exploring trends and considering where they might be taking us
  • Learning about the dynamics of global systems

Thinking about the future we want to see:

  • Clarifying goals/priorities
  • Developing alternative scenarios (if-then statements) about the future
  • Investigating the leverage various agent-classes have in shaping the future

Assumptions that underlie IFs development and use:

  • Global issues are become more significant as the scope of human interaction and human impact on the broader environment grow
  • Goals and priorities for human systems are becoming clearer and are more frequently and consistently enunciated
  • Understanding of the dynamics of human systems is growing rapidly
  • The domain of human choice and action is broadening

What can you investigate with IFs? Examples include:

  • Environmental Sustainability: Atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, world forest area, fossil fuel usage
  • Social/Political Change: Life expectancy, literacy rate, democracy level, status of women, value change
  • Demographic Futures: Population levels and growth, fertility, mortality, migration
  • Food and Agriculture: Land use and production levels, calorie availability, malnutrition rates
  • Energy: Resource and production levels, demand patterns, renewable energy share
  • Economics: Sectoral production, consumption, and trade patterns and structural change
  • Global System: Country and regional power levels