World Future Society
The World Future Society (WFS) is the largest membership organization in the futures field. The society is a nonprofit educational and scientific organization in Bethesda, Maryland, US, founded in 1966. It investigates how social, economic and technological developments are shaping the future. It seeks to help individuals, organizations, and communities observe, understand and respond to social change appropriately and investigates the effects of applying anticipatory thinking to society.
Through its magazine, The Futurist, media, meetings, and dialogue among its members, it endeavors to raise awareness of change and encourage development of creative solutions. The society takes no official position on what the future may or should be like. Instead it seeks to provide a neutral forum for exploring possible, probable, and preferable futures.
The Society has members in more than 80 countries, and has active chapters in cities around the world. The Society holds an annual conference during July, which usually features keynote speakers and one-or two-day courses dealing with the future. Membership is open to anyone who wishes to join and can afford it. The society claims that its membership includes sociologists, scientists, corporate planners, educators, students and retirees.
Annually, the Society reviews the past year in order to make predictions about the future. Many members are not professional futurists. Membership includes CEOs, ambassadors, teachers, marketers and fashion designers.
The society's web site features digital library resources about futurism and content from the society's various publications.
The World Future Society publishes numerous books, including Futuring: The Exploration of the Future (Oct. 2005), written by society founder Edward Cornish, as well as several print and electronic journals.
The Futurist, a full-color bimonthly magazine that reports on a technological, societal, and public policy trends. Among the thinkers and experts who have contributed to The Futurist include: MIT architecture scholar William G. Mitchell: Washington Post writer Joel Garreau; planetary physician Thomas Alured Faunce, inventor Ray Kurzweil; Foresight president J. Storrs Hall; Daniel Barnett of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health on flu pandemic; Former Harper's editor Lewis Lapham; Center for Strategic International Studies senior fellow Edward N. Luttwak; Pulitzer Prize nominee James Martin; U.S. Comptroller General David M. Walker; and former CIA director Robert James Woolsey, Jr..
In 2011, The Futurist featured the writing of technology writer Kevin Kelly, marketing writer and speaker Seth Godin, nature writer Richard Louv, writer and scholar Evgeny Morozov, environmentalist and MacAuthur Fellow Lester R. Brown and others.
The Futurist was nominated for a 2007 Utne Independent Press Award for Best Science and Technology Coverage.
The Futurist has published articles by forecaster and Smart Money columnist Jamais Cascio, NASA chief research scientist Dennis Bushnell, Financial Times economist Martin Wolf, workplace expert John Challenger and Wall Street Journal "Gen X" columnist Alexandra Levit. The magazine published exclusive interviews with former U.S. Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, serving U.S. congressman Dennis Kucinich, Harvard evolutionary biologist Marc Hauser, as well as inventor (and World Future 2010 featured speaker) Ray Kurzweil.
The Futurist featured coverage on:
- Powering an energy-hungry civilization with uranium, sunlight, wind, the gulf stream, garbage, ammonia, algae, other sources.
- The potential impact of artificial intelligence and nanotechnology on invention and manufacturing,
- Changing the weather to combat climate change,
- How to create your own artificial island nation,
- The job market of the 21st century,
- The future of national security in the age of cyber warfare, by former White House advisor Marvin Cetron,
- The influence of neuroscience on traditional ideas of morality.
- Powering the World with Artificial photosynthesis.
- World Future Review published bimonthly by the World Future Society as a peer-reviewed academic journal about the practice of foresight. The journal is edited by World Future Society President Timothy C. Mack.
- Futurist Update, a monthly electronic newsletter with topical items of interest to the futures community;
- Outlook, an annual report offering members selected forecasts that can help them anticipate events of the future;
- Learning Tomorrow, a quarterly electronic newsletter with articles of on a wide range of education or training subjects written by WFS members and education professionals around the world.
- Future Times, a quarterly Web journal about the World Future Society and its activities plus a column on new technologies written by WFS President Timothy C. Mack.
- Frequently Asked Questions About WFS
- Cornish, Edward (Jan–Feb 2007). "How The Futurist was Born" (pdf). The Futurist. ISSN 0016-3317. Retrieved 2014-06-24.
- "Back to the Future : Trends: After examining its 1989 forecasts, the World Future Society looks to the '90s and beyond to envision major changes at home, on the road and at work.". Retrieved June 2015.
- "Defining 'futurist'". Retrieved June 2015.
- Encyclopædia Britannica Blog Dennis Bushnell article from THE FUTURIST magazine, reposted
- The Futurist Interview with Martin Wolf, May–June 2009 edition
- Encyclopædia Britannica Blog Levitt Op-Ed from The Futurist magazine reposted
- The Encyclopædia Britannica Blog Interviews with Newt Gingrich, Dennis Kucinich, others, reposted from the July–August 2009 edition of The Futurist
- The Futurist magazine table of contents, September–October 2009 edition
- The Futurist magazine table of contents, July–August 2009 edition
- The Futurist magazine table of contents, May–June 2009 edition
- The New York Times Idea Blog, featuring The Futurist magazine, June 10, 2009
- The Futurist magazine The table of contents from the September–October 2009 issue
- The Reinvention of Morality, The Futurist magazine, January–February 2009
- Powering the World with Artificial Photosynthesis The Futurist magazine, May–June 2013
- About WFS - Board and Council
- Timothy C. Mack Bio
- World Future Society (WFS) official website