Eye of Europe – The Research and Innovation foresight community

As a Coordination and Support Action funded by the EU, project “Eye of Europe” aims to enhance the integration of foresight practices into Research and Innovation (R&I) policy making across Europe. Ultimately, the project envisions a more cohesive and influential R&I foresight community that contributes significantly, as a collective intelligence, to shaping and guiding policy decisions.

To this end, Eye of Europe builds on existing initiatives and experiences to foster knowledge-sharing between foresight practitioners and policy makers, attract domain experts in foresight endeavours, and engage a broader audience in futures thinking. Nurturing futures4europe.eu as the online home for the community and running various face-to-face events with different stakeholders will underpin these ambitions.

The project runs between November 2023 – October 2026 and relies, methodologically, on the following building blocks:

  • Futures4Europe.eu as the online hub for the R&I foresight community in Europe:
    The existing platform will be upgraded to better accommodate the interests of various stakeholders such as foresight experts, beneficiaries, domain experts, and an active audience. It will operate on multiple integration levels, from mapping organizations and experts to sharing foresight results and capabilities. Moreover, it will act as the communication gateway for ongoing foresight activities, events, educational and inspirational materials. More on the platform here.
  • Sharing of practices:
    This entails mapping institutions engaged in R&I foresight activities, promoting mutual learning through interactive formats, developing shared visions for the future of foresight in R&I policy within the European Research Area (ERA), fostering exchanges among the foresight in R&I policy community through conferences, encouraging dialogues between futurist/expert communities, academics and policy practitioners.
  • Running foresight pilots:
    Conducting a series of pilot workshops and online consultations with diverse formats, methodologies, and participants. This involves identifying topics of common interest within the European Research Area (ERA), where foresight perspectives offer added value, designing and implementing tailored pilot foresight activities involving various stakeholders, harnessing lessons learnt and feeding them into the platform and other dissemination channels.
  • Boosting futures literacy: 
    The project encourages meaningful engagement with diverse audiences, from foresight professionals, researchers, policy-makers to various futures sensitive profiles (e.g. entrepreneurs, journalists, artists) and the wider civil society. The project will provide guides, methodology toolboxes, and training modules for R&I foresight and futures literacy. Prospectiva will help create diverse content for futures literacy, such as conversational podcasts and multimedia materials on foresight methods and outcomes.
  • Fueling the public discourse around futures: 
    Fostering the foresight community via the online platform Futures4Europe, social media and a dedicated newsletter. In addition to highlighting the project’s own initiatives, Eye of Europe will also promote foresight content developed in other projects, showcasing a diverse range of perspectives and insights within the foresight field. The quarterly newsletter will feature various content types like interviews, project updates, and foresight-related articles. Social media, particularly futures4europe’s LinkedIn page, will be used to engage professional communities and wider audiences.

Eye of Europe leverages the experience of 18 partners across Europe coming from all walks of foresight expertise and practice:

Futures Garden – creating fictional artifacts through speculative design

Futures Garden aims at creating inspiring alternative future scenarios through the use of fictional future artifacts that invite to reflection and debate. The pilot project coordinated by Institutul de Prospectiva was carried out in 2024 and addressed two themes:

“Dealing with future selves” explores new ways of being, individually and collectively, examines new practices and technologies that enhance self-reflection and sharing of emotions, which help shape our choices in life and nurture a renewed sense of togetherness.

“Extending human perception to new scales” explores the richness of non-human intelligences, expanding our attention and appreciation for their unique sensory worlds, their “umwelt” – what they “feel” and how they “think”. In doing so it departs from the human-centric worldview towards a deeper understanding and celebration of life on Earth.

The project unfolded along several phases, depicted in the figure below and then further described:

  • Horizon scanning:

Identifying and curating cutting-edge concepts, theories, practices and technologies that may reshape our notion of futures selves and of extended human perception, by diving into literature from various fields (e.g. psychology, biology, epigenetics, biotechnology, neuroscience, cultural theory, spirituality). These content items were then used as a selection or in combination, depending on the concept design ideas in the speculative design phase.
The full results of the horizon scanning are available in the report Foresight literature review brief

  • Speculative Design:

Transforming selected briefs, together with design agencies NORMALS and Modem, into thought-provoking future artifacts in the form of short movies – Inwards and Symbiotic – which render the imagined future scenarios more tangible, immersive and engaging.

The full movies will become available for the wider public in June 2024.
The teasers below give a glimpse into this creative work:
Inwards teaser: https://vimeo.com/887304151
Symbiotic teaser: https://vimeo.com/887303461

  • Citizen and Policy Engagement:

Reflecting on the various societal implications of the speculative scenarios, gathering diverse perspectives and insights from EU citizens and policymakers. This phase involved a series of eight workshops, conducted between late November and early December 2023.

  • Sharing with the wider public:

Presenting on dedicated website futuresgarden.eu the project journey and outcomes, so that audiences from all around Europe and the world can engage with this inspiring work

The final report of the project showcases the work carried out in Futures Garden, describing each step and associated outcomes.


Futures Garden initiated by the EU Policy Lab
Commissioned by the DG for Research & Innovation through the Foresight on Demand framework contract
Supported by the European Commission

Austrian Institute of Technology
Fraunhofer ISI
Institutul de Prospectiva (Lead of pilot project)

Dealing with future selves & Extending human perception to new scales – join the online workshop

When foresight meets speculative design, the result is not only cinematic and poetic, but also more tangible and potent in the way it paints potential futures. Project Futures Garden is warmly inviting you to engage with two fictional artifacts that showcase thought provoking future scenarios regarding “Dealing with future selves” and “Extending human perception to new scales”.

Join us for an immersive and interactive experience!

Registration link: https://futures-garden-human-perception-identity.eventbrite.de

Date and time: Dec 7th 2023, 14:00 – 16:30 CET

The Artifacts:


The film Inwards invites us to explore new practices and technologies that enhance self-reflection and sharing of emotions, thus helping shape our choices in life and nurture a renewed sense of togetherness.

>> Watch the teaser: https://vimeo.com/887304151


The film Symbiotic invites us to explore new ways of inhabiting the perception of other intelligent beings, to embody their experience, their sensory world, their “umwelt” – what they “feel” and how they “think”.

>> Watch the teaser: https://vimeo.com/887303461

Stories, including those about potential futures, can bind and bond us in communion. They renew us, because when we imagine the future we invariably transform our present, our current thoughts and emotions. Give yourself this treat on Thursday, December 7th 2023.

Who Should Attend?

  • EU citizens interested in reflecting on and discussing future fictional artifacts, thus fostering new ideas and attitudes that may reshape their present lives and their future
  • Policymakers looking for fresh perspectives derived from future scenarios
  • Futurists, designers, and behavioral scientists exploring the power of citizen engagement in molding future imaginaries

Check out our webinar – Foresight for entrepreneurial minds

In a nutshell, foresight is a structured conversation about potential futures. Foresight tools and concepts can be employed in different future-sensitive settings, and entrepreneurial discovery and business innovation can certainly benefit from this practice.

This webinar addresses students with entrepreneurial ambitions and facilitators who may guide them in the process of generating ideas that take into account future opportunities and challenges, whether they are already emerging or are barely discernable in the present.

The webinar is available here.

It is part of our work in project FOReSiGHTFlexibility and Resilience in Digital Transformation and Intelligent Automation – Advanced Skills and Tools for Academia and Entrepreneurs.


Science, technology, and innovation (STI) for ecosystem performance: Accelerating Sustainability transitions

Human performance has long been a dominant pursuit and driver of progress in science, technology and innovation (STI). As notions of performance are still guiding STI research, discussions on its nature are relevant and shape STI directions. Human needs and performance are inextricably linked to challenges related to the health of the planet. Considering that, a debate is warranted to shift the attention from human performance to a more inclusive performance of flourishing ecosystems. 

In this context, the vision of the project “S&T&I FOR 2050. Science, Technology and Innovation for Ecosystem Performance – Accelerating Sustainability Transitions” was driven by the desire for STI efforts to place ecosystem performance on par with human performance. This broadens the focus of STI to encompass multiple conceptualisations of human-nature relations and to contribute to sustainability transitions.

The project’s overarching goal was to identify and map future scientific and technological developments, which can radically improve ecosystem performance. In doing so, it provided reflections on the 2nd strategic plan of Horizon Europe (HE), in its broad direction to support the Sustainable Development Goals.

The study was conducted along several phases:

  • Based on literature review, the project team developed three perspectives on future relations between humans and nature and humans’ role in the flourishing of planetary ecosystems.
  • A two-round Dynamic Argumentative Delphi (DAD) explored the most dynamic scientific and technological developments.
  • Drawing in on the three perspectives and the results of the DAD survey, six case studies on core sustainability issues explored the three perspectives. Reflections on implications for R&I policies in the context of the European Green Deal conclude each case study.

The final report of the project was published by the European Commission and is available here.

Institutul de Prospectiva brought a number of contributions to this project:

  • Carried out the two-round Dynamic Argumentative Delphi survey, between December 2021 and February 2022. The survey engaged over 600 experts globally in enriching, assessing and prioritizing STI directions in terms of their potential to contribute to the capability of planetary ecosystems to flourish from now to 2050. The full report of the survey is available here.
    • a synthetic report highlighting: the most promising STI directions, considering their potential to contribute to the capability of planetary ecosystems to flourish from now to 2050; and the potential significant harms that STI could inflict on the capability of planetary ecosystems to flourish from now to 2050. The synthetic report is available here.
  • Elaborated the case study “Data as representation, which proposes three scenarios on the way data is understood and used in relation to the human and natural ecosystems by 2050. The final aim is to suggest the implications for the way R&I is organized and its challenges in each scenario. The case study is available here.
  • Elaborated the case study “Soil to Soul, which proposes three scenarios exploring human-soils relations. As sense-making devices, these scenarios discuss how different ontologies of soils shape different actions, be them soil management practices in agriculture contexts or Research and Innovation (R&I) practices. The case study is available here.

The project “S&T&I FOR 2050. Science, Technology and Innovation for Ecosystem Performance – Accelerating Sustainability Transitions” was conducted on behalf of the European Commission. The project team comprises experts from the following organizations: Austrian Institute of Technology (lead), Institutul de Prospectiva , Fraunhofer ISI , Insight Foresight Institute (IFI), ISINNOVA , Visionary Analytics .

Reimagining the Food System: scanning the horizon for emerging social innovations

The horizon scanning project ‘Reimagining the food system: scanning the horizon for emerging social innovations” (July 2021 – December 2021) embraced a bottom-up approach to investigate emerging food system practices and  behaviours, with emphasis on social innovation, across the entire food chain, from production, processing and manufacturing, through supply, retail and services, to consumption and waste management.

This project consisted of:

  • Conducting a horizon scanning process that led to the identification of over 200 weak signals/emerging trends that were further nested into 24 emerging issues along the food system segments. Team Prospectiva ran the horizon scanning and the clustering, showcasing the results in both visual (see the canvases below) and narrative format.
  • Analyzing a subset of ten selected emerging issues by developing individual factsheets and an outlook of their interrelations.  
  • Drawing key insights from the emerging issues identified, particularly in terms of driving forces and actors, risks and opportunities and key uncertainties. 

Read the briefing published by the European Environment Agency –   Reimagining the food system through social innovations — European Environment Agency (europa.eu) – which integrates the key findings of this project.

Canvas of all emerging issues | © Institutul de Prospectiva
Canvas of emerging issues – segment: Producing food | © Institutul de Prospectiva
Canvas of emerging issues – segment: Processing and manufacturing | © Institutul de Prospectiva
Canvas of emerging issues – segment: Processing and manufacturing | © Institutul de Prospectiva
Canvas of emerging issues – segment: Consuming food | © Institutul de Prospectiva
Canvas of emerging issues – segment: Waste management | © Institutul de Prospectiva


The project research team was composed of experts from: of ISINNOVA, Institutul de Prospectiva, Austrian Institute of Technology and Insight Foresight Institute.