20 minutes from the future

Exploring post-Covid-19 scenarios

11 May 2020 | Written by La redazione

New episode of 20 minutes from the future, this time with Markku Wilenius, writer, futurist and rector of the Dubai Future Academy to explore the possible post-Covid-19 future scenarios.

The ongoing health emergency is in some ways also an opportunity to try to transform the normalcy we are used to into something new, possibly better. This transformation process must go through the analysis of possible future scenarios in order to make the most sensible and shared choices together. Andrea Dusi, president of Impactscool, tried to explore some of these possible futures together with an expert in the field: Markku Wilenius, one of the most important futurists in the world who has been involved in futures studies for over 25 years to investigate the challenges and opportunities inherent in possible futures, telling them to companies and organizations all over the world. Of Finnish origin, where he held the chair on future studies at the University of Turku, he now lives in Dubai where he is dean of the Dubai Future Academy.

An opportunity not to be missed. The pandemic is putting a strain on our societies but at the same time it provides us with a moment of reflection to rethink our world: “we must rethink how we manage our society – explained Wilenius -, our business and our lives, ( coronavirus editor’s note) is an alarm clock for rethinking in a more social, longer-term and more strategic way. […] The question is whether we will take the opportunity to learn. ”

A more sustainable future. Between rivers and crystal clear lakes, a drop in nitrogen dioxide in the air of big cities and the return of animals to areas previously trafficked by human activity, nature seems to be taking a small breath of air from human oppression. “If you think about it – commented Wilenius -, the coronavirus has blocked part of the economy of our countries and has reduced emissions, something we wanted to do and said we wanted to do for years, and something small enough to be invisible was enough to make us take a small step forward towards acceptable levels of sustainability “. “We are in the middle of an experiment and I hope we will learn the lesson, I am optimistic and I think we will, it would be very sad to go back to doing things as we did them before the virus.”


A future that can be reached but towards which one must walk, and to know the first steps to be taken, Andrea Dusi asked the futurist what they are. “The first step is to increase our curiosity about alternative futures. Many of the things we do in our society and business, as well as in life, come from the past, we continue to do things as we have always done them. […] The second, however, is to stop thinking that there is only one way for the future, we must learn to look at alternatives, our options, possible scenarios. Thinking about possible scenarios – continues Wilenius – is the basis of futures thinking, it serves for any solution to complex problems and today we live in an incredibly complex world. This means that we can no longer look to the future as a simple system. ”

Watch the full interview:

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