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New website to explore likely changes ahead for nonprofit sector

Howard Lake | 11 June 2010 | News

The Management Centre (=mc) has launched, a website where sector experts contribute their vision (or ‘scenario’) for the not-for-profit sector in 2020. The content is publicly available, and =mc hope that it will stimulate discussion about the opportunities and challenges to come in the next decade.
Scenario planning is “a method for engaging with a raft of possible future dynamics and it offers a way to systematically identify their implications”. As such, say =mc, “it is a method that provides leaders with the information they need to equip their organisations for the future”. Future scenarios can cover topics such as changing geo-political power, technology, global warming, and the dissipation of national ‘giving’ boundaries.
Kate Gilmore, Principal Management Consultant at The Management Centre, said: “Scenario planning is a highly effective way of anticipating and adapting to future uncertainty – whatever lies ahead. It can give leaders the advantage as they work to “future proof” their organisations for effective defense of their causes”.
Several scenarios are already live at the site including one from Marc Dubois, Executive Director of Médecins Sans Frontières UK, who questions whether the ‘Golden Era’ of the Western-based global NGO is grinding to a halt. He says of global NGOs that: “By 2020 we will either have re-birthed ourselves or joined the cassette tape, Vanilla Ice and the stegosaurus.”
The website offers ./guidance about how to implement scenario planning and case studies, including the British Red Cross’s preparations for a UK terrorist attack that were swiftly put into action at the time of the 7/7 London bombings.
The new website was developed following the success of Fundraising Scenarios,
a global research programme designed to identify likely scenarios for fundraising over the coming decade. It looked at likely income streams, donor stereotypes, new and emerging markets and technological advances.