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Regions

Regional Economic Outlook: Sub-Saharan Africa

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, April 1, 2015
Abstract in English: 
Sub-Saharan Africa’s economy is set to register another year of solid economic performance, expanding at 4½ percent in 2015. This said, the expansion will be at the lower end of the range registered in recent years, mainly reflecting the adverse impact of the sharp decline in oil and other commodity prices.
The effect of this shock will be quite heterogeneous across the region. The region’s eight oil exporters will be hit hard and, with limited buffers, are expected to effect significant fiscal adjustment, with adverse implications for growth. For much of the rest of the region, near-term prospects remain quite favorable, with many countries benefiting from lower oil prices—although, for a number of them, this positive effect will be part offset by the decline in the prices of other exported commodities. Notable exceptions are South Africa, where growth is expected to remain lackluster, held back by continuing problems in the electricity sector, and Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, where the Ebola outbreak continues to exact a heavy economic and social toll.
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123
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The Asia-Pacific Power Balance: Beyond the US–China Narrative

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Saturday, October 10, 2015
Abstract in English: 
The simplistic US-China focused narrative of the future of the Asia-Pacific does not sufficiently take into consideration other regional actors such as Japan and India, new instruments of leverage in the region, or the extent and complexity of changing relationships.

In making the situation appear simpler than reality, Asia-Pacific countries and the United States risk narrowing the aperture through which they evaluate policy choices regarding major regional challenges. At the same time, the bipolar perspective, potentially invoking Cold War-type mentalities, could exacerbate tensions rather than relieve them. Seeing US–Chinese competition as the main variable in the region could become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

This paper seeks to go beyond this perception by laying out the major narratives of the region’s power distribution currently in play in its four principal powers – the United States, China, India and Japan. Building on a review of the main instruments of power and the current regional trends, this paper argues that the Asia-Pacific region in 2030 will have at least four principal characteristics:
- The pace of change will increase, along with its volatility. This will result in the power distribution between the principal actors becoming more complex, finely balanced and difficult to assess clearly. The emergence of new, often disruptive, technologies, particularly in media and communications, will make control of information increasingly difficult.
- Power will become more diverse and diffuse, with more state and non-state actors having influential roles. Power is also becoming more diffuse within states, making it harder for governments to manage internal debates and to send clear messages to neighbours, particularly where nationalism is growing.
- The region will become more complex, unpredictable and thus hard to govern as a result of the rise of new actors, challenges and tools. This could lead to policy paralysis on the part of leading state actors as a swiftly changing environment and too many choices lead to greater uncertainty and, in the end, hesitancy or no action being taken.
- The region will become more interdependent, which makes the previous point troubling. Already, all states in the Asia-Pacific are increasingly dependent on one another for growth, stability and security.
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Number of pages: 
80
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FORESIGHT 2015

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, October 1, 2015
Abstract in English: 
The futures (in the plural) that we focus on uncovering are the ones that people are not thinking enough about. Our role is not to predict, but to signal to decision-makers new opportunities and new risks that they might not otherwise be alert to.
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Number of pages: 
84
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An initial assessment of territorial forward planning/foresight projects in the European Union

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Abstract in English: 
Territorial foresight is a structured set of participatory vision building and strategic planning activities that allow regions to think, consider, debate and shape the medium to long-term future of their regions, provinces or cities. Many of the key process elements of foresight are widely used in strategic planning – the formation of expert panels, the use of socio-economic and environmental data consultation, brainstorming, trend and extrapolation and the setting of strategic goals. Foresight, unlike most approaches to strategic planning, deals with long-term prospects, and draws upon the views of multiple stakeholders.
This report analyses the interactions between European strategies and policies, and the activities of the analysed territorial foresights, in order to assess the potential opportunity to create a territorial foresight network or platform at the European level.
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Number of pages: 
450
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The European Union and the Urban Dimension

Title Original Language: 
The European Union and the Urban Dimension
Abstract Original Language: 
As strategic territories for the future of countries and continents, cities and urban or rurban regions appear to be in the front line as areas of tension and as agents of intervention concerning the major challenges facing the planet. Our so-called "welfare" societies in Europe cannot escape these global processes. Initially, this report will attempt to establish a diagnosis of urban realities in Europe by exposing certain methodological difficulties and issues. In part two, it will address the theme of integrated strategies for the sustainable development of territories and ways of regulating them within cities and rurban regions. The third part will cover the role of the European Union and Member States in building the urban field. Finally, it will discuss the perspectives opened by the Europe 2020 strategy for cities and rurban regions, as well as some proposals.
Original Language: 
Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Sunday, July 1, 2012
Abstract in English: 
As strategic territories for the future of countries and continents, cities and urban or rurban regions appear to be in the front line as areas of tension and as agents of intervention concerning the major challenges facing the planet. Our so-called "welfare" societies in Europe cannot escape these global processes. Initially, this report will attempt to establish a diagnosis of urban realities in Europe by exposing certain methodological difficulties and issues. In part two, it will address the theme of integrated strategies for the sustainable development of territories and ways of regulating them within cities and rurban regions. The third part will cover the role of the European Union and Member States in building the urban field. Finally, it will discuss the perspectives opened by the Europe 2020 strategy for cities and rurban regions, as well as some proposals.
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Number of pages: 
24
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Urban Governance in the EU - Current Challenges and Future Prospects

Title Original Language: 
Urban Governance in the EU - Current Challenges and Future Prospects
Abstract Original Language: 
The quality of territorial foresight and, in particular, of urban foresight, is nowadays measured not so much in terms of the ability to anticipate possible futures, always challenged by the increasing uncertainty and the exponential rate of change, as in terms of the ability to construct collective visions of the future that are ambitious, proactive and engaging for stakeholders and citizens.
What foresight has to offer is its capacity to approach both long-term challenges, perceived in the present, as well as shared aims and values in a distant horizon. This publication attempts to address these challenges by ‘imagineering’ the future of cities though the application of methods and techniques drawn
from the strategic foresight and prediction fields in a systematic, rigorous and holistic way.
Original Language: 
Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Abstract in English: 
The quality of territorial foresight and, in particular, of urban foresight, is nowadays measured not so much in terms of the ability to anticipate possible futures, always challenged by the increasing uncertainty and the exponential rate of change, as in terms of the ability to construct collective visions of the future that are ambitious, proactive and engaging for stakeholders and citizens.
What foresight has to offer is its capacity to approach both long-term challenges, perceived in the present, as well as shared aims and values in a distant horizon. This publication attempts to address these challenges by ‘imagineering’ the future of cities though the application of methods and techniques drawn from the strategic foresight and prediction fields in a systematic, rigorous and holistic way.
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Number of pages: 
199
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Governance of Metropolitan Regions. European and Global Experiences

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, June 20, 2011
Abstract in English: 
For many years now the Committee of the Regions has been building a reputation of being "the EU's Assembly of Regional and Local Representatives".
It decided to contribute to the debate on metropolitan governance by pulling resources together with a long-standing international partner like the Forum of Federations (FoF). The going together with such a renowned global academic network on federalism in this project, provided the CoR with an unprecedented mix of analytical and policy expertise on urban and metropolitan issues to be able to offer to our members and the rest of the EU institutions.
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Number of pages: 
183
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Challenges at the Horizon 2025

Title Original Language: 
Challenges at the Horizon 2025
Abstract Original Language: 
Good governance is based upon foresight that allows decision makers to highlight their choices under a new perspective. The Committee of the Regions (CoR) has turned to forward planning and foresight to react to new political and socioeconomic developments in Europe.
The aim of this report is to identify the future challenges that confront the CoR and the European local and regional authorities (LRAs) at the horizon in 2025. It draws up three possible scenarios with predictions about the future evolution of European integration and the implications for the LRAs and the CoR.
The future evolution of European integration necessarily involves an identification of a number of trends, challenges and opportunities over the coming decades.
Subsequently, the report formulates key questions for debate and provides practical options and suggestions on how LRAs can make progress.
Original Language: 
Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Saturday, February 1, 2014
Abstract in English: 
Good governance is based upon foresight that allows decision makers to highlight their choices under a new perspective. The Committee of the Regions (CoR) has turned to forward planning and foresight to react to new political and socioeconomic developments in Europe.
The aim of this report is to identify the future challenges that confront the CoR and the European local and regional authorities (LRAs) at the horizon in 2025. It draws up three possible scenarios with predictions about the future evolution of European integration and the implications for the LRAs and the CoR.
The future evolution of European integration necessarily involves an identification of a number of trends, challenges and opportunities over the coming decades. Subsequently, the report formulates key questions for debate and provides practical options and suggestions on how LRAs can make progress.
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Number of pages: 
137
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Latin America in a Changing World

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Saturday, March 1, 2014
Abstract in English: 
This publication is the second in a series dedicated to raising awareness of global trends analysis and how future scenarios will affect Latin America. In the Question and Answer section, experts from throughout the region examine the most important global trends for Latin America and how policymakers should address them. In the second section, Program Director Sergio Bitar discusses the need for a stronger relationship between global trends analysis and education policy. The final section offers a summary of Bitar’s recently published book, Why and How Latin America Should Think about the Future.
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Spain in the World 2033

Title Original Language: 
España en el mundo 2033
Abstract Original Language: 
En 2033, el escenario geopolítico global será radicalmente distinto al actual. Las potencias occidentales habrán perdido peso en favor de nuevos bloques regionales -de carácter económico y político-, que competirán entre sí y que tenderán a proteger sus propios mercados e impulsar, al tiempo, flujos de inversión directa.
Original Language: 
Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Abstract in English: 
By 2033, the global geopolitical scene will have radically changed. Both economically and politically, western powers will have lost their prominence in favour of new regional blocks. These rising poles will compete among themselves and are likely to protect their own markets; after a while they will become sources of direct investment.
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