This project is about improving the link between higher education and employers (profit and non-profit), thereby increasing the fit between the skills of students and the needs of employers. It is strongly driven by the needs of employers. Employers currently lack employees with foresight skills, making them less successful in their business. This project is to develop courses that enable students to learn and stimulate skills and competences to carry out foresight studies and apply them in innovation processes. Foresight is not an ability to predict the future, but an act of looking forward, by analyzing trends, signals of change and movements. Foresight is the study (= Futures Research) on possible, probable and preferable futures.
These courses will improve the ‘futures consciousness’ and ‘future orientation’ of students by teaching them how to connect the Grand Societal Challenges (GSC) with innovation processes by using foresight. The desire and need to develop a more societal responsible way of business development is quite pervasive in our society. Foresight is of high importance for profit and non-profit organizations because it stimulates the ability to react quickly on changes and improves innovation processes. To address these desires and needs we have to teach students these knowledge and skills as soon as possible in the educational career of people which makes students the most relevant target group, stakeholders, and co-creators of this project.
Output will be, amongst others, 1 innovative educational module with 5 courses (5 ECTS in total), a platform to distribute the modules and a teachers manual to facilitate effective implementation. Students’ knowledge and skills will be enhanced by the module to be developed. In addition, an instrument which monitors the increase of future consciousness and orientation of the students involved, will be developed.
By involving both Higher Education Institutes (HEI) and organizations (Profit and Non-Profit) from various industries and countries, we establish an exchange of knowledge which supports meaningful innovation and focused creativity. The local partnerships between HE and employers will increase the relevance of skills taught and will strengthen the role of HE locally. This exchange will enable a trans-disciplinary approach.
The material will be published on this digital platform with open access. The platform will be available even after the project and will be further developed with new insights of new study groups.