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Futures Literacy: An essential competency for the 21st century

By Maike Stoll, 26. March 2021

“There is the urgent need to transform human governance by empowering everyone to use-the-future more effectively and efficiently.”

“People can become more skilled at ‘using-the-future’, more ‘futures literate’, because of two facts. One is that the future does not yet exist, it can only be imagined. Two is that humans have the ability to imagine.”


“UNESCO, in its role as a global laboratory of ideas at the cutting edge of human knowledge, has demonstrated that people and communities everywhere are capable of becoming more futures literate.”

UNESCO (The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) aiming at promoting world peace and security through international cooperation in education, the sciences, and culture … and they have stated that Futures Literacy is an essential competency for the 21st century.

This short article describes WHAT it is, and WHY it is interesting. We predict that Futures Literacy will be the tool behind the next paradigm shift. 

Are you curious about more signals? You can access the entire collection of our signal database Sonar, to read more about the Future of Work.