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Strategic Foresight Process - Improvements for the Hungarian Ministry of Defense

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Technical Report

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Naval Postgraduate School Monterey United States

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In 20132014, the Hungarian Ministry of Defense HUN MoD engaged in its first structured strategic Foresight process, a process designed to examine events that might affect Hungary until 2030. While it achieved success, the process also had shortcomings. Namely, the Strategic Analysis Group accurately predicted two events, Russias use of military force and the migration crisis worsening, yet they neither foresaw how fast Russian aggression would result in military conflict nor did they believe in their findings enough to appropriately prepare for the migration crisis. This thesis introduces the evolution and main concepts of Futures Studies and Foresight. It describes the Hungarian Strategic Foresight process and results, explains how the Hungarian experts contemplated the crises before they started, and compares their considerations to the actual events. It also uses the diagnostic tools inherent in Voross generic Foresight framework to analyze the HUN MoDs Strategic Foresight process, confirming those findings with Poppers methods categories. The thesis concludes that the Foresight process had relevant flaws caused by being unprepared regarding Foresight methodology and also by being intelligence-focused rather than leaving room for alternative future possibilities and out-of-the-box thinking. The thesis recommends improving Strategic Foresight methodology, building Foresight capacity, and raising awareness about the relationship between intelligence and Foresight work in the HUN MoD.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
  • Government and Political Science

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