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A generalised "layered methodology" framework

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Purpose - To outline and present a generalised scheme for using "layered methods" in foresight work. Design/methodology/approach - A number of different approaches to "layering" in futures studies and foresight work are examined and synthesised into a generalised scheme. The place of layered methods in foresight work is also examined, and the role of perceptual filters in interpretation is discussed. Findings - A schema of four major "strata", each potentially containing multiple sub-layers, is developed. The strata range from, for example, short-term trends in the shallowest level, through to long-term macrohistorical forces at the deepest level. Practical implications - The generalised scheme enables the practitioner to progressively move to greater levels of understanding as new layers of meaning are uncovered or constructed, as appropriate to the specific nature of the particular foresight engagement. The scheme also represents a template from which purpose-built interpretive frameworks can be constructed, as needed, in foresight processes and work. Originality/value - This paper provides a new, generalised and integrated approach to the use of interpretive frameworks in foresight work.

Keywords: Cognition; Consciousness; Research Methods; Thinking Styles

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2005-02-01

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