Insights · April 7th, 2023

2023 is still young, but there’s already a change in the attitudes of many business people regarding the future. Previously, businesses expressed occasional interest in possible disruptive scenarios, but their attention often quickly turned back to the apparently more pressing tasks of business-as-usual. But recent news of changes in AI capabilities, along with possible social transformations due to pandemics, geopolitics, and industrial unrest, is leading more and more business people to wonder: How can they become more effective in anticipating and managing potential significant changes in their business landscape?

In this context, the new book by our guest in this episode, Nikolas Badminton, is particularly timely. It’s called “Facing our Futures: How foresight, futures design and strategy creates prosperity and growth”.

Over the last few years, Nikolas has worked with over 300 organizations including Google, Microsoft, NASA, the United Nations, American Express, and Rolls Royce, and he advised Robert Downey Jr.’s team for the ‘Age of A.I.’ documentary series.

Topics in this conversation include:

  • A personal journey to becoming a futurist – with some “hot water” along the way
  • The “Dark Futures” project: “what might happen if we take the wrong path forward”
  • The dangers of ignoring how bad things might become
  • Are we heading toward “the end times”?
  • Being in a constant state of collapse
  • Human resilience, and how to strengthen it
  • Futurists as “hope engineers”
  • Pros and cons of the “anti-growth” or “de-growth” initiative
  • The useful positive influence of “design fiction” (including futures that are “entirely imaginary”)
  • The risks of a “pay to play” abundance future
  • The benefits of open medicine and open science
  • Examples of decisions taken by corporations after futures exercises
  • Tips for people interested in a career as a futurist
  • Pros and cons of “pop futurists”
  • The single biggest danger in our future?
  • Evidence from Rene Rohrbeck and Menes Etingue Kum that companies who apply futures thinking significantly out-perform their competitors in profitability and growth
  • The idea of an “apocalypse windfall” from climate change
  • Some key messages from the book “Facing our Futures”: recommended mindset changes
  • Having the honesty and courage to face up to our mistakes
  • What if… former UK Prime Minister David Cameron had conducted a futures study before embarking on the Brexit project?
  • A multi-generational outlook on the future – learning from the Iroquois


Nikolas Badminton is the Chief Futurist at He’s a world-renowned futurist speaker, consultant, author media producer, and executive advisor that has spoken to, and worked with, over 300 of the world’s most impactful organizations and governments. He helps shape the visions that shape impactful organizations, trillion-dollar companies, progressive governments, and 200+ billion dollar investment funds.

The #1 Best Selling Book – ‘Facing Our Futures: How Foresight, Futures Design and Strategy Creates Prosperity and Growth’ at AmazonBloomsburyBarnes and Noble and other fine purveyors of books. We’s also love it if you considered visiting and ordering from your local, independent book store as well.

Please contact futurist speaker and consultant Nikolas Badminton to discuss your engagement or event.

Facing Our Futures
Nikolas Badminton – Chief Futurist

Nikolas Badminton

Nikolas is the Chief Futurist of the Futurist Think Tank. He is world-renowned futurist speaker, a Fellow of The RSA, and has worked with over 300 of the world’s most impactful companies to establish strategic foresight capabilities, identify trends shaping our world, help anticipate unforeseen risks, and design equitable futures for all. In his new book – ‘Facing Our Futures’ – he challenges short-term thinking and provides executives and organizations with the foundations for futures design and the tools to ignite curiosity, create a framework for futures exploration, and shift their mindset from what is to WHAT IF…

Contact Nikolas