Strategic Design, Foresight, and Visioning

The underlying theories of Strategic Planning, Foresight, and Design have commonalities that, if considered thoughtfully, can augment and inform each other to create richer, smarter outcomes. This concurrence has the ability to help meet the demands of the rapid changes occurring across social, technological, and environmental business realms. This assignment, sponsored by the French luxury powerhouse Kering, focused Design Master students on strategic innovation projects that leveraged this broader concept.


The novel approach of Foresight by Design was realized and tested through this assignment. This approach synthesizes design-led and systematic thinking of preferable and desirable futures, and is posited here as being beneficial to the strategic planning process. Specifically, Design Thinking and Foresight techniques can be used to inform strategic opportunities for innovation that build on a share vision.

This work was informed by multiple sources, including existing scholarly writings recognized across the disciplines, ethnography, and Delphi methods.

Insights and Outcomes

Practicing systematic futures thinking, enhanced by Design tools and approaches, can enhance Strategic Planning’s ability to foster innovation, by detecting early warning signs of change and giving deeper insights into the phenomenon behind these signs. The Foresight by Design approach enhances concrete knowledge and processes for strategic innovation; it may also offer important contributions for overcoming weaknesses in aligning Strategy, Innovation, and Foresight functions.