Empowering Indonesia’s emerging policy makers with foresight skills

We are inspired by people’s determination to shape their present for a brighter future – this is core to SOIF’s mission to enable transformational foresight. The recent groundbreaking collaboration between SOIF’s Learning and Organisational Transformation and Indonesia’s Ministry of National Development Planning (Bappenas), with support from the United Nations Global Pulse Lab in Jakarta, was just such an opportunity for transformational change. 

SOIF hosted a three-day workshop in Bandung, Indonesia where we introduced the concept of strategic foresight to junior and mid-level policy makers from various directorates of the Ministry. The workshop bridged the gap between foresight theory and policy practice. Prior to the workshop, two virtual sessions were held to introduce the participants to foundational principles of futures thinking, and prepare them for a hands-on experience in Bandung. This groundwork prepared participants to use SOIF’s 4-stage journey right away, in a process designed to help learners effectively apply strategic foresight and become practitioners.

Trained to Navigate Complex Challenges

Central to the workshop was a collectively agreed upon Live Challenge: “What will the landscape of livelihoods, public services, and sustainable public finance in Indonesia look like in 2045?” Participants grappled with the question, employing tools acquired during the workshop to better explore the intricate interplay of factors that might shape Indonesia’s future. The journey involved scanning the external environment, exploring complex interactions within the national development system and building a set of scenarios depicting possible future trajectories for Indonesia.

Thereafter, participants were tasked with developing their own foresight projects, or use-cases, during the workshop. This ensured that participants carry their newfound foresight knowledge beyond the confines of the workshop itself into their everyday work. Their inventive projects spanned a wide range of sectors and issues including; governance, public services, education, health, and sustainable energy. They demonstrated the potential and far-reaching impact of forward-thinking methodologies in the national policy planning environment.

Nurturing anticipatory institutions

After the inspiring workshop, the team relocated to Jakarta to deliver an executive session for Bappenas directors and the Chief Secretary for National Development Planning Agency. The executive session underscored the role of foresight as an institutional capability in shaping national strategy and planning. It ignited interest in integrating a foresight approach into government frameworks to effectively tackle the forthcoming policy challenges Indonesia will face in future.

Building Future-Focused Partnership

SOIF’s presence in Indonesia, alongside UNGP’s ongoing work in the region, highlighted the potential of foresight as a significant lever for transformational change in the Asia-Pacific. We remain dedicated to nurturing our collaboration with Bappenas and UNGP Pulse Lab Jakarta, as partners committed to innovative strategies and forward-looking perspectives, able to guide Indonesia toward sustainable futures.

To the exceptional participants who embarked on this journey with us, a heartfelt Terima kasih (Thank you). Your unwavering commitment to shaping Indonesia’s future is truly inspiring, and we eagerly await the ongoing development of policies that will chart the course for the nation’s future.

Join us on a similar journey during our upcoming training opportunity. Register for our next Virtual Course in Strategic Foresight, starting 3 October 2023.

For more information, please feel free to contact us.