While the daily sense of anxiety feels like it might never end, the foresight professional in me is already looking to the future horizon. We are realising the power of collective action, and perhaps in this chaos there is a window of opportunity that we can seize in order to rewrite old ways of thinking.
I have been re-energised and inspired by reading Antifragile, the latest book by philosopher and author of The Black Swan, Nassim Nicholas Taleb. In it, he examines how humankind – as well as industry – not only gains from chaos but requires it in order to survive and flourish. Amid discussions around uncertainty as being something desirable and powerful, Taleb argues that ‘some things benefit from shocks; they thrive and grow when exposed to volatility, randomness, disorder and stressors.’
Indeed, the Covid-19 disruption is already proving to have positive environmental benefits. NASA and the European Space Agency report that, since January, their satellites have recorded a major drop in global air pollution. In Venice, wildlife is returning to a tourist-free city as the quality of its canal water improves.
It is an exciting time to work in the discipline of foresight; to lean into this changing landscape, imagining new possible scenarios and building future-fit strategies to turn this uncertainty into action. Right now, businesses need to recalibrate and regard fear as a positive catalyst, not a threat to all that we currently know.
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To find out how your business should navigate the Covid-19 outbreak, get in touch with The Future Laboratory team.
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