Beyond ‘The Future of…’ Responding to the Civilisational Challenge
Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER). Research Conference (13th : 2008 : Brisbane)
Among an array of desirable ‘skills for life and work’ are those that relate to understanding the global context, the challenges visible there and the specific ways young people can be prepared for actively responding. Educators at every level need to move beyond tokenistic treatments of ‘the future’ (singular) to understand the ‘civilisational challenge’ facing us. In so doing, futures concepts, tools and other resources will be invaluable. This paper draws on some aspects of recent scientific research and sources within the broad futures literature to highlight aspects of the near-future environment. It then suggests a number of tasks for educators that need to be undertaken and applied. Due to the limitations of the format, such tasks are not spelled out in detail. Rather, more appropriate in-depth sources are provided for those wishing to explore this fascinating area further.