blogged here), but will be more focused on general theoretical topics of collective intelligence, complexity, and organizational learning in the context of uncertainty. All are welcome to attend but feel free to ping me if you need directions or more details.


Large-scale Participatory Futures Systems: Harnessing Collective Intelligence for Crowdsourced Scenario Planning


Scenario planning is a structured method for exploring planning & design strategy under severe uncertainty and dynamic change. It is said that this process produces “plausible stories of the future” which helps decision-makers understand uncertainty and change, produce enhanced organizational learning and consensus, and facilitate more flexible planning mindsets. Can this process be reproduced or enhanced through online means? This dissertation builds upon Malone et al.’ s (2010) “Genome of Collective Intelligence” to create a schema for how such an online system would work, combining Schwartz (1991) and van der Heijden’s (1996) eight-step process of face-to-face scenario planning with insights from complexity theory,¬†constructivist learning theory¬†and computer supported collaborative learning (Stahl et al., 2006). The presentation will briefly introduce scenario planning and its contemporary methods, discuss a proposed schema for online approaches and a research method for evaluating them, and then conclude with a presentation of preliminary experimental results and an outline of future work.

Date and location:

Friday, April 9th
2:00 – 3:30 PM
MIT Department of Urban Studies and Planning
Cambridge, MA


Professor Joseph Ferreira, Jr. Assistant Professor Michael Flaxman Professor Olivier Barreteau

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