The world is changing in ways that can have major effects on the emergency management community. Thinking more broadly and over a longer timeframe will help us understand these changes and their potential impacts. FEMA launched the Strategic Foresight initiative (SFI) to promote broader and longer term thinking on those changes and their effects.
By understanding the potential future environment, organizations can better understand and anticipate risk and take advantage of opportunities. This information can support decisions about investments, planning efforts, and exercises. SFI can also help establish a research agenda for the field of emergency management in your communities.
The purpose of this website is to generate discussion about how to shape an emergency management community that is prepared for whatever challenges the future holds and how to cultivate a common sense of direction and urgency to drive action toward meeting our shared future needs – starting today. The contents of this website do not necessarily represent the official policies of the Department of Homeland Security or the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
The SFI Community and FEMA
FEMA is but one member of the emergency management community. SFI exists due to the participation of a diverse network of more than 900 individuals from across the United States and the international community. Since 2010, SFI has engaged all levels of government, non-profits, businesses, and individuals. The SFI community spans a broad range of fields and disciplines, and includes both emergency management professionals and members of the general public.
We also invite you to get involved or deepen your engagement with SFI by joining our Network, attending a webinar, or contacting us with specific questions, requests, feedback or ideas.
The SFI toolbox includes a video, webinar, and various reports that reflect some of the research, collaboration and insights received from the SFI community. Please feel free to contact us with input or questions.
- Video - Thinking Seriously about the Future to Enhance Disaster Resilience (New)
Video developed to spark long-term thinking about issues driving change in disaster management
- Webinar - Putting Foresight into Practice
Audio on a panel discussion between several Whole Community innovators whose projects are highlighted in the Toward More Resilient Futures report
- Report - Toward More Resilient Futures: Putting Foresight Into Practice
Highlights from the Strategic Foresight Initiative, recap and outlook for 2013 and beyond
- Report - Crisis Response and Disaster Resilience 2030: Forging Strategic Action in an Age of Uncertainty
Progress report highlighting the 2010 - 2011 insights of the Strategic Foresight Initiative
- SFI Information Packet
Project overview and status, insights from research, analysis and workshops, and a list of strategic needs developed in 2011
- Summary of Findings
High-level overview of SFI findings for a variety of topics affecting the future of Emergency Management
As part of the Strategic Foresight Initiative's (SFI) objective to determine trends and drivers that could affect the future of emergency management, environmental scanning was conducted to define what driving forces of change, or Drivers, were most important to the emergency and disaster management field. To understand these Drivers, the SFI team engaged the broad emergency management community to get a cross-section of perspectives and to begin dialogue throughout the community.
At various workshops, individuals representing all levels of government, non-profit and business partners, and academia, came together to define the driving forces that will shape emergency and disaster management. These drivers became the focus of follow-on SFI work including the development of the below "Driver Papers”, which became the basis for future SFI Webinars, conference calls, and workshops.
The purpose of these papers is to generate discussion about how to shape an emergency management community that is prepared for whatever challenges the future holds and how to cultivate a common sense of direction and urgency to drive action toward meeting our shared future needs – starting today. The contents of these papers do not necessarily represent the official policies of the Department of Homeland Security or the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
- Risk Management and Insurance (New)
- Community Capacity and Emergency Management (New)
- US Demographic Shifts
- Universal Access to and Use of Information
- Critical Infrastructure
- Government Budgets
- Technological Development and Dependency
- Changing Role of the Individual
- Climate Change
- Evolving Terrorist Threat
- Global Interdependencies
The SFI Team
Since SFI aims to engage a large and diverse audience, communication takes on many forms. The SFI Team, based out of the FEMA Office of Policy and Program Analysis (OPPA), supports communication through an online collaboration space, in-person meetings, conference calls, and other means.
- Tim Baden, Director, Strategic Planning and Analysis Division
- Tyler Corson-Rikert, Strategic Planning and Analysis Division
- Scott Burgess, Strategic Planning and Analysis Division
To join the SFI Network or send us your questions or comments, please email FEMA-OPPA-SFI@fema.gov