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Scenario planning and risk management

The excellent newsletter of the Wharton School is worth signing up to.

They have a whole bunch of knowledable and articulate professors who blog, write and podcast on all sorts of management issues.

It’s much less stuffy than the Harvard attempts at new media. Check it out here.

A new short article and podcast, based on a new book on risk management planning is an interesting read. Touching on climate change, extreme weather and other areas, the piece suggests that “continuing shift in how companies think about the future” is taking place.

Paul J. H. Schoemaker, research director of the Wharton School’s Mack Center for Technological Innovation says companies tend to adopt one of three strategic postures.

The first, Schoemaker says, is the “zero-future” option: Here, caution rules the day; no attempts are made to analyze, anticipate or predict anything beyond the short-term, and major decisions are put off until the fog lifts.

The second choice is to bet strongly on one particular future.

The third option entails what Schoemaker describes as a deliberate attempt to separate what we do and do not know about the future, and to use that as a basis for exploring many possible futures.

This last one is clearly the most sensible, and relevant for sustainability.

Read more, here.

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