International Futures (IFs) is a tool for thinking about long-term global futures. It assists with:

·                Understanding the state of the world:

·                Exploring trends and considering where they might be taking us

·                Learning about the dynamics of global systems

Thinking about the future we want to see:

·                Clarifying goals/priorities

·                Developing alternative scenarios (if-then statements) about the future

·                Investigating the leverage various agent-classes have in shaping the future

Assumptions that underlie IFs development and use:

·                Global issues are become more significant as the scope of human interaction and human impact on the broader environment grow

·                Goals and priorities for human systems are becoming clearer and are more frequently and consistently enunciated

·                Understanding of the dynamics of human systems is growing rapidly

·                The domain of human choice and action is broadening

What can you investigate with IFs? Examples include:

·                Environmental Sustainabity: Atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, world forest area, fossil fuel usage

·                Social/Political Change: Life expectancy, literacy rate, democracy level, status of women, value change

·                Demographic Futures: Population levels and growth, fertility, mortality, migration

·                Food and Agriculture: Land use and production levels, calorie availability, malnutrition rates

·                Energy: Resource and production levels, demand patterns, renewable energy share

·                Economics: Sectoral production, consumption, and trade patterns and structural change

·                Global System: Country and regional power levels

There is a web site for IFs at which you can obtain additional information: http://www.du.edu/~bhughes/index.html