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futureportal… an ezine on the future - September 2007

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Welcome to futureportal, an ezine of the Institute for the Future at Anne Arundel Community College (IF @ AACC), September 2007, volume 3, issue 8... We study the future to help build a better tomorrow.

Get a jump on the future with "The Art of Foresight" PDF produced by our partner the World Future Society.

Inside this issue (scroll down)

  • applied foresight... using the perspective
  • futures thinking...  looking ahead
  • on the horizon... events local, regional and global
  • applied foresight... using the perspective

Planning and foresight are essential in order to avert a pandemic. This World Health Organization site contains links to pandemic preparedness plans. Another WHO site focuses on the developing situation with respect to avian influenza. 

Think tanks have been studying, planning, and projecting into the future for many years. Resources for the Future is a 55-year old research organization which specializes in natural resource and environmental issues. Its homepage offers a variety of links on studies relating to such areas as energy, climate change, agriculture, and public health. Also located at the website is an article about the transformations of simple maps into informed visualizations. Developed using electronic tools such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and remote-sensing data, these visualizations can play a significant role in managing natural resources. 

  • futures thinking... looking ahead 

Recent tragedies have focused attention on the coal mining industry. Journalist Jeff Goodell has authored an extensive study of the industry in his book, Big Coal: The Dirty Secret Behind America's Energy Future. The Lyceum Agency's Web site offers a brief review of the book.

Also a must this month is a visit to the World Future Society's Futures Learning Section. This new section of  the WFS is an emerging group committed to all forms of futures learning. You can become a member of the section by following the directions at the bottom to register for the group's list serve.

  • on the horizon... events, local, regional and global

Fall is here once again and so is the Brown Bag Series sponsored by IF @ AACC. Please join us - these events are free and open to the public. 
"The Future of Civic Engagement" by Cathleen Doyle, Director of the Sarbanes Center for Public and Community Service.
 Sept. 10, 2007, Monday, 1-1:50 p.m., AACC, Arnold, Maryland, CALT 100

There is still time to register for FTR 100, Exploring the Future. This semester the three credit general education course will be co-taught by various AACC professors who are experts in their field. Don't miss this great opportunity to interact with different instructors and learn about their thoughts on the future and the importance of futuring.

If you are not interested in a semester long course, IF @ AACC also offers noncredit futures modules. These are great for anyone interested in an introduction to futuring, but does not have the time to devote to an entire semester. These modules are great for employers or educators who want to introduce their employees or students to futuring, but need some background to get started.

Another great opportunity for fellow Futurists! Join the FuturesLearning section!

Join the FuturesLearning Listserv ...

Thanks to Peter Bishop, Futures Studies, University of Houston,  the list, FuturesLearning, has been created through the University of Houston. This list is open to all interested parties, meaning, anyone may add/delete themselves to/from the list.
LISTSERV subscription requests need to be sent to the LISTSERV address rather than to the list itself.  You do this by sending mail to LISTSERV@LISTSERV.UH.EDU with the command

   sub FuturesLearning Your Name

as the body of the message. Because LISTSERV verifies mailing paths for new subscribers, it is preferred that users subscribe themselves by the method outlined above. If you are unfamiliar with LISTSERV and its associated commands, you may want to add the commands


as additional lines of your message. LISTSERV will then send you a file containing a General Introduction to Revised LISTSERV that will give you some instruction on the service and a Quick Reference Card of the various commands.