Scenario Planning, Tracking Change, Framing Choices

While it is impossible to optimize for every possible beneficial outcome or feasible future, scenario planning is designed to put better information about alternative futures in the hands of decision makers, experts, and the public. The goal of scenario planning is to provide a comprehensive view of the interrelated pros and cons of potential futures by breaking out of traditional decision-making silos. As uncertainty increases and available resources decrease, it becomes more important to consider the full range of emerging conditions and the community's ability to adopt policies and pursue investments that will be resilient across a variety of potential futures. Scenario planning is an effective way to specify and assess these futures, whether for regional visioning, comprehensive planning, or project site planning.

Excerpted from Opening Access to Scenario Planning Tools," - Jim Holway, C. J Gabbe, Frank Hebbert, Jason Lally, Robert Mathews and Ray Quay,Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, 2008.

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