NGFP Fellowship Program
Are you using futures and foresight methods to make the world a better place? Do you want to be part of a global network of young foresight practitioners with a shared purpose? Do you need support to amplify your positive impact in the world?
If you replied yes to these questions, then you should apply to the NGFP Fellowship. Come join a young cohort of changemakers from around the world in re-imagining and co-creating equitable and inclusive futures!
What is foresight?
Foresight is a systematic way of engaging with uncertainty by exploring alternative futures, including aspirational ones. As a discipline, it has the potential to shape the future. It is not about predicting the future, but understanding your current and future operating environment. Insights gained from foresight equip communities and organisations to recognise and respond to emerging threats and opportunities by developing enhanced competitiveness, resilience and agility.
A foresight practitioner is anyone who takes a futures approach to their work to explore and understand the impacts of longer-term factors and drivers of change on the future, to understand better how different futures might evolve, and to generate insights for decisions made today.
What is the fellowship about?
The fellowship is an opportunity for young professionals to have more support as they begin to explore the futures and foresight field. We know that being a futurist can be a lonely place, and a sort of practice that particularly young people do on the side of their daily jobs, and usually for free. The fellowship is a way to provide the next generation of future and foresight enthusiasts with a platform to connect with like-minded people from around the world, receive mentorship and foresight capability building, participate in regional and sector-specific hubs, and access funding to develop their foresight projects. Fellows also have the opportunity to participate in highly relevant events in the futures and foresight field, and to be connected with today’s decision-makers at the highest levels.
Who can apply?
Anyone between 18 and 35 years old, as well as those who are older, but have less than 5 years of experience using foresight. We are particularly enthusiastic about applications from those living in the Global South, and those working on the world’s most complex issues, or Global Challenges, as we like to call them. Every year, we make sure we have at least two fellows under 25 years old. In 2023, we will reserve one spot within our cohort to a fellow from the Balkans. This is our way to honour the memory of a great SOIF’s colleague, Sophie Middlemiss, who passed away in 2021 and were passionate about the region.
What if I am younger than 18 years old?
If you are between 12-17 years old but would like to get involved, you can apply to the Young Voices Award.
What if I’m older than 35 years old?
We ask for applicants to be between the ages of 18-35 OR have less than five years foresight experience, as we want to champion and promote youth voices and those who are newer to the foresight space. It’s one of the values of NGFP to ensure younger voices are represented in decision-making spaces and to elevate and amplify youth perspective, in a world saturated by older, less diverse opinions. That’s why we strive to protect the space the Fellowship creates for newer, emerging practitioners.
What funding is available?
At the beginning of the journey, each fellow receives a USD 1,000 prize to develop and accelerate their project. If a fellow’s application is considered outstanding by our judges (identifiable by the badge “judges choice”), the grant is doubled. By the end of their one-year journey, all fellows have the chance to run for the Fellowship Main Prize, which consists of a more substantial grant (at least USD 10,000) and acknowledges those who made the most of their journey.
What does a successful application look like?
You must have a project or idea with a clear theory of change of how you will use futures and foresight methods to create better alternative futures. You should be able to demonstrate how you will engage your community in your project and explain how insights of the future will help you create positive change in your local, regional, or global community today. We are very interested in knowing why being part of the NGFP Network is important for you and the development of your project. And if you are completely new to foresight, we would like to hear more about what has motivated you to start your project.
Can my application focus on any area or sector?
Yes, we welcome applications from any area of expertise or sector, as long as they use futures and foresight approaches to address relevant issues and create positive transformation. However, we believe that certain global issues require urgent attention and close collaboration across sectors and generations to be properly addressed. These are what we call “Global Challenges” and we will prioritise applications working on one of these areas. For 2023, we have identified seven complex Global Challenges: Climate and Biodiversity Nuclear Security Democracy & Governance Intergenerational Fairness Emerging Technologies Indigenous and other Futures Methods from Around the World Peacebuilding. In future years, it is possible that some of these Global Challenges will remain a priority, others might be deprioritized, and new ones can be added, depending on the signals we are identifying and the choices of our members.