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Robinson’s “Backcasting” Approach

John Robinson introduced the term “backcast” in a paper in Futures in 1990 [1]. It formalized an approach that others had used before, sometimes called a “strategic” or “normative” approach. Below, the steps in his procedure are reproduced.

Actors

Unspecified/flexible

Procedure

  1. Determine objectives
  2. Specify goals, constraints and targets
  3. Describe present system
  4. Specify exogenous variables
  5. Undertake scenario analysis
  6. Undertake impact analysis

References

[1] Robsinson, John. 1990. “Futures Under Glass: A Recipe for People Who Hate to Predict,” Futures October.