Appendix CTo stretch our thinking about environmental scanning and using the results,
let's consider how we might develop an index, reflecting key factors, to help
us gauge our progress over time. Although the following example is not
directly related to education, it can be used to develop a similar index for
education. A key question might be: “What would be included in a State
of Education Index?”Theodore Gordon, senior research fellow for the Millennium Project
at the American Council for the United Nations University and founder
of The Futures Group, is a longtime leader in scanning the environment
and bringing it into sharper focus. In 2001—02, the Millennium Project's
research program began “an investigation into the development and potential use of a State of the Future Index (SOFI)” (Gordon, 2003b). The index
would include “an experimental approach to the statistical combination
of historical records and forecasts of selected global indicators.” Although
the “apparent precision of an index can easily be mistaken for accuracy,”
Gordon pointed out, the SOFI could serve as an indicator of progress and
problems in various parts of the world.Gordon noted five key questions crucial to the development of an
A State of the Future Index
|1. ||What variables should be included in the index?|
|2. ||How can very different variables be combined?|
|3. ||How can the variables be forecast?|
|4. ||How can the variables be weighted?|
|5. ||How can double accounting be avoided? (For example, carbon
dioxide concentrations and global temperature might provide highly
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: Future-Focused Leadership: Preparing Schools, Students, and Communities for Tomorrow's Realities.
Contributors: Gary Marx - Author.
Publisher: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
Place of publication: Alexandria, VA.
Publication year: 2006.
Page number: 177.
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