Two initiatives have arrived simultaneously to give insights into the future. The Foresight Knowledge Pool, sponsored by the DTI, is now available at www.foresight.gov.uk. It is an electronic library of visions, information and views about the future. When construction of the site is finished it will provide a single point of access to the work of Foresight panels and to most Government information available on the worldwide web.
The Pool seeks to cut across traditional sectorial and disciplinary boundaries by using vision and partnership to look ahead and prepare for the future. It will be used to help in building new partnerships and stimulate new thinking by bringing together people with complementary and conflicting views of the future. Members of the Whitehall Future Group use the Pool for such issues as the changing age distribution of the population, wealth creation and the quality of life.
The Futures Observatory has been launched by the Open University and the Strategic Planning Society at www.oubs.open.ac/future. It contains detailed predictions, based on the results of extensive research in conjunction with the Open University Business School. It carries the archives of the Futures Observatory debates.