Scenario-planning as a Stand-alone Tool for Strategic Foresight: Limitations and Options

By Arif Sikander.

Published by Change Management: An International Journal

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: March 9, 2016 $US5.00

A large body of the literature confirms that scenario-planning and foresight activities have become a widely used strategic management approach for understanding future uncertainty in an ever-changing environment. There is little analysis on why some scenario methods succeed and others fail (Bowman, Mac Kay, Masrani, and Mc Kiernan 2013). Although research, as determined though this study, confirms the benefits of applying foresight activities and scenario-planning, it is the opinion of the author that the case studies presented, even the ones involving large firms, are only limited to a particular organizational framework. It would be worthwhile to explore the degree of success or failure of such methods depending on context. This paper in particular critically analyzes the role of scenarios in strategic foresight. The results of this article indicate that scenario-planning is not perfect, its strengths and weaknesses are all quite evident, and therefore, to be successful in the turbulent future, organizations may take advantages from scenarios, while some other tools also can be necessary complements. The results have implications for academics as well as executives. To carry out scenarios in supporting strategy planning is always not easy, it requires leadership teams to be fully aware of the theory, as well as the practice techniques so that to overlook the entire situation as a whole.

Keywords: Scenario-planning, Strategic, Foresight, Organization

Change Management: An International Journal, Volume 16, Issue 1, March 2016, pp.13-18. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: March 9, 2016 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 546.028KB)).

Dr. Arif Sikander

Lecturer, School of Management and Governance, Murdoch University, Perth, WA, Australia