Bio

The Popper Boys

The Popper Boys

Dr Rafael Popper is Principal Scientist in Foresight, Organisational Dynamics and Systemic Change at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Research Fellow and Director of Executive Education on Foresight and Horizon Scanning at Manchester Institute of Innovation Research of the University of Manchester, where he completed his PhD on 21st Century Foresight. He is also Innovation Director and CEO at Futures Diamond in Czech Republic; Director of the iKnow Innovation, Foresight and Horizon Scanning System and Leader of the Mapping activities of the European Foresight Platform (EFP). His main areas of work include: ‘foresight’ as an instrument of policy, the development of foresight and horizon scanning methodology, the design of forward-looking activities and their evaluation.

He is an Economist from the Central University of Venezuela (UCV)  and before moving to the UK he worked for two years (2001-02) as Research Fellow at the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) and the International Centre for Science and High Technology in Italy. His research contributed to the development of the first online foresight tools (mid-1990s) and he has since been advising future-oriented initiatives of government, business, research and education actors at local, national and international levels.

Since the late 1990s he has been a pioneer and developer of online foresight tools and he is widely known for raising the profile of Latin American foresight and for designing and leading the first evaluation of a national foresight programme in this region (i.e. the Evaluation of the Colombian Foresight Programme). At the international level, Rafael is recognised for his contributions to foresight practices and methodologies and, as a result, in 2009 he received two Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence for his outstanding and highly commended publications in these areas. He is also co-editor of an Edward Elgar’s Book of the Month: “The Handbook of Technology Foresight” (2008).

He has been Scientific Coordinator and Principal Investigator in several European Union funded foresight initiatives such as the Euro-Latin SELF-RULE Network and the Mapping Foresight activities of the new European Foresight Platform (former EFMN). And he is currently Scientific Director of the innovative iKNOW project developing state-of-the-art foresight and horizon scanning platforms to interconnect knowledge about surprising and emerging issues, the so-called Wild Cards and Weak Signals. iKnow technological innovations include: iBank (to characterise and store emerging and ‘frontier’ issues, such as wild cards and weak signals, aka WI-WE), iScan (to monitor and search WI-WE issues), iDelphi (to assess and prioritise WI-WE issues), iLibrary (to share innovation and FHS documents), iCommunity (to engage and network innovation and FHS people), iNews (to feature key contributions to iKnow’s FHS systems) and iOracle (to map FHS practices, players and outcomes – in collaboration with the mapping activities of the European Foresight Platform). He has also been member of the European Commission’s Expert Group on Rationales for the European Research Area and various foresight advisory boards. And as part of the research agenda of the iKnow project he developed a web-based ERA Toolkit on Applications of Wild Cards and Weak Signals to Grand Challenges and Interdisciplinary Research Agendas.

As for his teaching, Rafael has been Co-Director of postgraduate courses on foresight at the University of Manchester and Co-Director of Executive Education courses for Foresight organisers, sponsors and practitioners. He has been guest lecturer in many European and Latin American countries and he has designed and delivered short courses and keynote speeches for a large variety of audiences in the public, private and academic sectors.

Emails:

Keeping track of my knowledge transfer & networking activities

Keeping track of my knowledge transfer & networking activities

Publications

Featured…

Popper, R. (2008), Foresight Methodology, in Georghiou, L., Cassingena, J., Keenan, M., Miles, I. and Popper, R. (eds.), The Handbook of Technology Foresight, Edward Elgar, pp. 44-88. This chapter uses different approaches to reflect on a variety of issues concerning foresight methodology. The chapter provides a comprehensive and structured overview starting with the foresight process and common practices in the sequence of pre-foresight, recruitment, generation, action and renewal. The potential contribution of the full range of methods to each phase is mapped providing a useful guide for selection and combination of appropriate approaches. The chapter presents three different frameworks for classifying foresight methods and practices. It also provides important insights for distinguishing between various rationales, approaches and uses of foresight methodology.

Popper, R. (2008), How are foresight methods selected?, Foresight, 10(6), pp. 62-89.  [Outstanding Paper Award at the Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence]  Based on an in-depth analysis of nearly 900 cases studies,  this paper addresses a challenging topic, which in both academic and professional literatures have been widely discussed but mainly from one single angle, that is, how to select foresight methods? From that point of view researchers and consultants promote (even if unintentionally) the use of particular methods. Here the question of selection is raised from a different perspective: how are foresight methods selected? The guiding ‘theory’ is that a better understanding of the fundamental attributes of foresight methods and their linkages to the core phases of a foresight process, together with the identification of possible patterns in the selection of methods, will provide useful insights as to how the selection of methods is carried out.

Popper, R. and Medina, J. (2008), Foresight in Latin America, in Georghiou, L., Cassingena Harper, J., Keenan, M., Miles, I. and Popper, R. (eds.) The Handbook of Technology Foresight, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, pp. 256-86. This chapter shows that while foresight entered the LA policy environment as a tool for better anticipating futures, its interpretation and use has evolved differently in each country. This depends primarily on country size and resources, international sponsorship, the political will and the perceived needs and opportunities. A key influence shaping the institutional development of foresight in the region is the role of international organisations in providing the initial political impetus, together with financial, technical and logistical support for the exercises themselves. The impressive and diverse range of activity, particularly in the larger countries (Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela) highlights the fact that despite substantial international influences, there is a particular Latin flavour to foresight activity which is in its own right making an important contribution to foresight methods and practice.

Keenan, M. and Popper, R. (2008), Comparing foresight ‘style’ in six world regions, Foresight, 10(6), pp. 16-38. [Highly Commended Paper at the Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence] This paper presents a comparison of foresight activities in six world regions – Europe (broken down into three sub-regions: North-West Europe, Southern Europe, and Eastern Europe), North America, South America, and Asia.  The paper highlights regional differences and offer possible explanations for a perceived ‘variety of practices’. The hypothesis is that differing political and socio-economic traditions between regions, together with diverse levels of economic development (what we term collectively the ‘contextual landscape’) should have implications for the ‘style’ of foresight carried out.

Most recent…

Authored Books

  1. Popper, R., Georghiou, L, Miles, I. and Keenan, M. (2010), Evaluating ForesightFully-Fledged Evaluation of the Colombian Technology Foresight Programme (CTFP), Cali: Universidad del Valle, ISBN 978-958-670-842-5.

Edited Books

  1. Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R. (2010), Manual de Prospectiva Tecnológica. Conceptos y Práctica, Mexico: Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales, ISBN 978-607-7629-39-9.
  2. Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R. (2008), The Handbook of Technology Foresight: Concepts and Practice, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, ISBN 978-1-84542-586-9.

Academic Journal Papers

  1. Villarroel, Y., Lozano, A. and Popper, R. (2011), ‘Metared de Gestión de Conocimiento en Espacios de Catástrofe’ (Knowledge Management Meta-Network in Catastrophe Spaces), Gerencia 2000, 11. 2.
  2. Villarroel, Y., Popper, R. and Lozano, A. (2010), ‘Prospectiva en America Latina: Una Visión Sistémica en Espacios de Catástrofe’ (Foresight in Latin America: A Systemic Vision using Catastrophe Spaces), Pensamiento Divergente (Divergent Thinking), 1(1), pp. 59-91.
  3. Popper, R. (2008), How are foresight methods selected?, Foresight, 10(6), pp. 62–89. [Outstanding Paper Award Winner at the Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence 2009]
  4. Popper, R. and Miles, I. (2008), Information Society Technologies and Europe’s Objectives, Форсайт (Foresight), 1(5), pp. 52–59. [in Russian]
  5. Keenan, M. and Popper, R. (2008), Comparing foresight ‘style’ in six world regions, Foresight, 10(6), pp. 16–38. [Highly Commended Award Winner at the Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence 2009]
  6. Butter, M., Brandes, F., Keenan, M. and Popper, R. (2008), Evaluating Foresight: an introduction to the European Foresight Monitoring Network, Foresight, 10(6), pp. 3–15.

Book chapters

  1. Popper, R. Metodología de la Prospectiva (2011), in Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R. (2011), Manual de Prospectiva Tecnológica. Conceptos y Práctica, Mexico: Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales, ISBN 978-607-7629-39-9.
  2. Popper, R. and Medina, J. La Prospectiva en Latinoamérica (2011), in Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R. (2011), Manual de Prospectiva Tecnológica. Conceptos y Práctica, Mexico: Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales, ISBN 978-607-7629-39-9.
  3. Miles, I., Cassingena Harper, J., Georghiou, L., Keenan, M., and Popper, R. Los Múltiples Rostros de la Prospectiva (2011), in Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R. (2011), Manual de Prospectiva Tecnológica. Conceptos y Práctica, Mexico: Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales, ISBN 978-607-7629-39-9.
  4. Miles, I., Cassingena Harper, J., Georghiou, L., Keenan, M., and Popper, R. Nuevas Fronteras: Prospectiva Emergente (2011), in Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R. (2011), Manual de Prospectiva Tecnológica. Conceptos y Práctica, Mexico: Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales, ISBN 978-607-7629-39-9.
  5. Popper, R. (2010) Fully-Fledged Evaluation of ForesightAchievements and Impacts of CTFP, in Popper, R., Georghiou, L, Miles, I. and Keenan, M. (Eds.), Evaluating Foresight: Fully-Fledged Evaluation of the Colombian Technology Foresight Programme (CTFP), Cali: Universidad del Valle, ISBN (tbc)
  6. Popper, R. (2010) Benchmarking CTFP against European and South American Foresight, in Popper, R., Georghiou, L, Miles, I. and Keenan, M. (Eds.), Evaluating Foresight: Fully-Fledged Evaluation of the Colombian Technology Foresight Programme (CTFP), Cali: Universidad del Valle, ISBN (tbc)
  7. Popper, R. (2008) Foresight Methodology, in Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R., The Handbook of Technology Foresight: Concepts and Practice, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.
  8. Popper, R. and Medina, J. (2008), Foresight in Latin America, in Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R., The Handbook of Technology Foresight: Concepts and Practice, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.
  9. Miles, I., Cassingena Harper, J., Georghiou, L., Keenan, M., and Popper, R. (2008), The Many Faces of Foresight, in Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R., The Handbook of Technology Foresight: Concepts and Practice, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.
  10. Miles, I., Cassingena Harper, J., Georghiou, L., Keenan, M., and Popper, R. (2008), New Frontiers: Emerging Foresight, in Georghiou, L., Cassingena H., J., Keenan, M., Miles, I., and Popper, R., The Handbook of Technology Foresight: Concepts and Practice, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.
  11. Popper, R. (2008) El Proceso Prospectivo, in Medina Vásquez, J. and Sánchez, J.M. (2008), Convergencia Prospectiva y Vigilancia Tecnológica, COLCIENCIAS, Colombia. [in Spanish]
  12. Popper, R. (2006) Diseño y Preparación de un Ejercicio Delphi: El caso Euforia, in Medina Vásquez, J. and Rincón, G. (2006), La Prospectiva tecnológica e industria; COLCIENCIAS-CAF, Colombia. [in Spanish]
  13. Popper, R and Miles, I. (2005) IST and Europe’s Objectives – a Survey of Expert Opinion, in Pascu, C. and Filip, F. (eds) Visions of the future for IST, challenges and bottlenecks towards Lisbon 2010 in an Enlarged Europe. Publishing House of the Romanian Academy, pp. 87-101, Romania

Professional Journal Papers

  1. Popper, R. and Villarroel, Y. (2008), SELF-RULE: The Euro-Latin Foresight Network, Cuadernos de Administración No. 40. [in Spanish]
  2. Popper, R., Keena, M., and Medina, J. (2008), Evaluating Latin American Foresight: The Colombian Foresight Programme Evaluation, Cuadernos de Administración No. 40. [in Spanish]
  3. Keenan, M. and Popper, R. (2007), Research Infrastructures Foresight. A practical guide for policy makers and managers of existing (and future) research infrastructures (RIs), European Commission, Brussels.

Official Reports

  1. Popper, R. (2009), Mapping Foresight: Revealing how Europe and other world regions navigate into the future, EFMN, Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union, European Commission, 126pp. ISBN 978-92-79-13110-3. Available at: http://ec.europa.eu/research/social-sciences/pdf/efmn-mapping-foresight_en.pdf
  2. Popper, R. (2008), Rural Areas: One of the Most Important Challenges for Europe, European Foresight Monitoring Network Brief, 129, available at http://www.efmn.eu
  3. Popper, R. (2008). Future Scenarios on the Biotechnology Sector, A report produced for the BEFORE project. Available at http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/before/biotech_scenarios.pdf
  4. Popper, R. (2008). Future Scenarios on the ICT Sector, A report produced for the BEFORE project. Available at http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/before/ict_scenarios.pdf
  5. Popper, R. (2007). The Biotechnology Sector: Trends and Drivers, A report produced for the BEFORE project. Available at http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/before/biotech_trends.pdf
  6. Popper, R. (2007). The ICT Sector: Trends and Drivers, A report produced for the BEFORE project. Available at http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/before/ict_trends.pdf
  7. Popper, R. (2006) Evaluation of Foresight Activities at CGEE (Brazil), PREST/SELF-RULE Report to CGEE, Brasilia, Brazil. Available at: http://www.cgee.org.br/prospeccao/doc_arq/prod/registro/pdf/regdoc2121.pdf
  8. Popper, R. (2006) Evaluación de actividades de Vigilancia y Prospectiva Tecnológica relacionadas con las Áreas Temáticas Estratégicas de los Centros de Excelencia en Colombia, PREST/SELF-RULE Report to the Colombian Foresight Programme and COLCIENCIAS, Bogota, Colombia. Available at: http://www.evaluatingforesight.com/
  9. Popper, R. (2003) The Knowledge Society EUFORIA Delphi. Report submitted by PREST to the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions (EFL), Dublin, Ireland. At: http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/EUFORIA/
  10. Popper, R. and Sveinsdottir, T. (2010) European Grand Challenges: 21 challenges of the 21st century, iKNOW working paper 001, available at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  11. Popper, R., Miles, I., Nugroho, Y., Ravetz, J., and Sveinsdottir, T. (2010), Major EU state elects neo-fascist leader, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 001, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  12. Sveinsdottir, T., Miles, I., Nugroho, Y., Popper, R., and Ravetz, J. (2010), Transhumanism becomes a significant force, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 002, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  13. Nugroho, Y., Cain, D., Popper, R., and Sveinsdottir, T. (2010), Universal electronic systems breakdown, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 003, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  14. Nugroho, Y., Cain, D., Popper, R., Ravetz, J. and Sveinsdottir, T. (2010), Wheat crisis hits humans and animals, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 004, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  15. Ravetz, J., Popper, R., and Sveinsdottir, T. (2010), Floods in Europe cause mass migration, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 005, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  16. Sveinsdottir, T., Ravetz, J. and Popper, R. (2010), Outburst of the black economy, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 006, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  17. Walker, A., Popper, R., Ravetz, J. and Sveinsdottir, T. (2010), Pervasive self-diagnosis and self-treatment, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 007, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  18. Walker, A., Popper, R., Ravetz, J. and Sveinsdottir, T. (2010), Invisibility spray available in “Boots”, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 008, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  19. Popper, R., Ravetz, J. and Sveinsdottir, T. (2010), China’s investment and services “great wall”, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 009, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  20. Sveinsdottir, T., Miles, I., Popper, R., Nugroho, Y. and Ravetz, J. (2010), Abrupt disintegration of the Euro Zone, iKNOW Wild Card Policy Warning, 010, at http://www.iknowfutures.eu
  21. Popper, R., Georghiou, L, Miles, I. and Keenan, M. (2008), Evaluating the Colombian Foresight Programme, PREST final report to Colciencias and SENA, UK: The University of Manchester.
  22. Popper, R., Georghiou, L, Miles, I., Cassingena Harper, J., Havas, A., Morato, A., and Sokolov, A. (2008), How can national foresight programmes be better tuned in to the dynamics of STI systems? The Colombian Case, Colciencias and SENA, UK: University of Manchester.
  23. Popper, R. and Sainz, G. (2008), Migration: One of the Most Important Challenges for Europe, EFMN Brief, 130, available at http://www.efmn.eu
  24. Popper, R. Keenan, M., Miles, I., Butter, M. and Sainz, G. (2007), Global Foresight Outlook 2007: Mapping Foresight in Europe and the rest of the World, Annual Mapping Report, European Commission, EFMN, pp. 66. Available at http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/efmn/gfo_2007.pdf
  25. Popper, R., Keenan, M. and Medina, J. (2007), Evaluating Foresight – The Colombian Case, European Foresight Monitoring Network Brief, 119, available at: http://www.efmn.eu.
  26. Popper, R and Miles, I. (2005), The FISTERA Delphi: Future Challenges, Applications and Priorities for Socially Beneficial Information Society Technologies, A report produced for the European Commission, University of Manchester, UK. At: http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/PREST/FISTERA/
  27. Popper, R. Keenan, M. & Butter, M. (2005) Mapping Foresight in Europe & other Regions of the World. The EFMN Annual Mapping Report 2004-2005. Report prepared by PREST and TNO to the to the European Commissions’ DG Research, Belgium
  28. Popper, R., Green, L., Flanagan, K. and Miles, I. (2004) Overview of Selected European IST Scenarios, A report produced for the European Commission, University of Manchester, UK. At: http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/PREST/FISTERA/
  29. Popper, R. and Miles, I. (2004), Recomendaciones al PNP Colombiano, PREST, The University of Manchester, UK. [in Spanish]
  30. Compañó, R., Pascu, C., Burgelman, J-C., Rader, M., Saracco, R., Spinelli, G., Dachs, B., Weber, M., Mahroum, S., Popper, R., Green, L., and Miles, I. (2006), Foresight on Information Society Technologies for the European Research Area (FISTERA), European Commission Scientific and Technical Research series, Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, 22319 EN, ISBN 92-79-02753-0.
  31. Georghiou, L., Keenan, M., Popper, R., Clar, G., Cassingena Harper, J., and Crehan, P. (2006) Scenarios for future scientific and technological developments in developing countries 2005-2015, European Commission.
  32. Georghiou, L., Cassingena Harper, J., Cooke, P., Cozzens, S., Dearing, A., Henriques, L., Langer, J., Laredo, P., Sanz Menendez, L., Weber, M. and Popper, R. (2008), Challenging Europe’s Research: Rationales for the European Research Area (ERA). Report of the ERA Expert Group, European Commission, DG Research, EUR 23326 EN. Available at http://ec.europa.eu/research/era/pdf/eg7-era-rationales-final-report_en.pdf
  33. Miles, I., Popper, R. and Green, L. (2004) Exploring Emerging IST Applications, report of the FISTERA Trends, Drivers & Challenges Workshop, Seville, Spain. At: http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/PREST/FISTERA/

Review Articles

  1. Popper, R. (2002), PREST Foresight Course – Spring 2002, foresight, 4(6)

Publications in conference proceedings

  1. Popper, R. (2010) Foresight’s Eleven: A fictional desk-based ‘success scenario’ for ‘less frequently used’ foresight methods. Foresight – Between Science and Fiction, iFQ-Working Paper 7, Bonn: iFQ – Institut für Forschungsinformation und Qualitätssicherung. ISSN 1864-2799
  2. Villarroel, Y. and Popper, R. (2010) Can Systems Thinking and Catastrophe Theory be used in Foresight? The case of Latin American foresight evolution. Foresight – Between Science and Fiction, iFQ-Working Paper 7, Bonn: iFQ – Institut für Forschungsinformation und Qualitätssicherung. ISSN 1864-2799
  3. Popper, R. and Korte, W. (2004) Xtreme EUFORIA: Combining Foresight Methods. Paper presented at the EU-US Seminar: New Technology Foresight, Forecasting & Assessment Methods, Seville, Spain

Other Publications: Research

  1. Miles, I. and Popper, R. (2005), Foresight: Un camino de largo aliento, Encuentro CAF por la Competitividad, Published by the Andean Development Corporation, Caracas, Venezuela

Other Publications: Research Equivalent

  1. Compañó, R., Pascu, C., Burgelman, J-C., Rader, M., Boehle, K., Saracco, R., Spinelli,G., Dachs, B., Weber, M., Mahroum, S., Miles, I., Popper, R., and Green, L. (2004) Key Factors Driving the Future Information Society in the European Research Area, synthesis report on the FISTERA Thematic Network study, Published by the European Commission Directorate General JRC.
  2. Loveridge, D., Miles, I., Keenan, M., Popper, R., and Thomas, D. (2004) European Knowledge Society Foresight, EUFORIA Project Synthesis Report, Published by European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions (EFL), Dublin, Ireland.

Other Media: Research

  1. iKNOW Project Web 2.0 conceptual design and functionality architecture – This is an innovative web 2.0 environment which is currently under construction. It aims to support researchers and policymakers in Europe by interconnecting knowledge about wild cards and weak signals in a wide range of areas, including: health, transport, etc.
  2. KISA Project Website design – This is the public website for a study on future prospects for Innovation and Skills Requirements in the European Service Economy. It focuses in particular on KISA – Knowledge-Intensive Service Activities. The study involves the production of analytical reports and the development of relevant scenarios. At http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/kisa/
  3. SCOPE 2015 Project Website design – European Commission funded initiative aimed at producing scenarios for research and technology development cooperation with Europe. Available at: http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/prest/SCOPE/
  4. FISTERA/PREST Project Website design – European FP5 IST programme funded Thematic Network on Foresight on Information Society Technologies in the European Research Area. At http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/PREST/FISTERA/
  5. INNFORMED Project Website design is an initiative to support the use of Foresight techniques in S&T related public policy development in Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia. Available at: http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/PREST/innformed/
  6. SELF-RULE Network Website design – EU ALFA-funded programme for co-operation between higher education institutions of the European Union and Latin America.
  7. SELF-RULE Peru Biotech Futures Pilot Website design – Demonstrative exercise on Biotechnology.
  8. FARHORIZON Project Website design is an initiative aimed to pilot the use of foresight to align research with longer-term policy needs in Europe. Available at: http://prest.mbs.ac.uk/farhorizon/

Editorships: Journal

  1. Guest Editor of the Special Edition of Foresight, 2008, Volume 10, Issue 6


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