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When changes in the society happen slowly, we can project into the future by looking at past history. Hence, there is not much interest in futures prediction. However, when changes take place rapidly, there is increasing need for forecasting.

Since the 1960s, Taiwan¡¦s political, economic and societal fronts have gone through phases of stability, changes and rapid changes. Our lives today are much different from thirty years ago. Especially important, there is a marked change from habitual experiential attitude to one that is futures-oriented. This new attitude towards life could be due to national and international environmental conditions; however, a more accurate interpretation should be the development of a new way of life because the individual seeks survival and breakthroughs amidst the threat of changes. ¡§Futures watch¡¨ has become a way of life for people today.

The rapid growth of the field of Futures Studies began since mid-1950s. The primary cause of such phenomenal growth can be attributed to the breadth and depth of changes brought about by computer technology. Research into the future can help us ¡§understand, adapt to and create the future.¡¨ Only then can we avoid passively waiting for crises to happen, but instead actively grasp opportunities to create our own future. Unlike fields such as Economics, Psychology and Social Studies, which have developed academically for a long time, Futures Studies is still a young discipline engaged in much debate and discussion. However, the issue under debate is not about the nature of the science, but about the integration of technology. Undoubtedly Futures Studies is one of the most important domains among young academic disciplines.

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