Welcome to

The Long Term / Futures Thinking in Education Project

Our education system is in need of change. Too many students are dropping out, failing to engage, or inadequately preparing for a 21st Century career. A lot of solutions have been suggested. We’re working on one that is already showing initial positive outcomes and promises to deliver more.

The mission of the Long Term and Futures Thinking in Education Project is to foster the development of thoughtful, engaged citizens for whom critical, creative and long-term thinking are habits of mind.

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Join our movement by sharing your insights.

We want to hear about your research and work in long term and futures thinking in education. If you can host a student research team at your organization, volunteer to help students prepare forecasts, promote our project on your website or blog, or connect with us as a sister university, project or institute, we want to hear from you.

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Long Trees
  • “When managed properly, bringing the futurist’s toolbox into the classroom – predictive modeling, forecasting, scenario constructs and the like – can provide a powerful way for students to learn more deeply and make their own discoveries along the way.  Education is less about the statements we make, than the questions we ask.”

    Paul Saffo, Futurist

  • “One of the common characteristics of many of the great leaders is that they had taken time to understand how things have evolved historically, and where things may be headed. Then they made strategic decisions in the short-run that took the bigger picture into account.”

    Dr. Stephanie Couch, Principal Investigator, CSUEB

  • “Long Now is proud to partner with Cal State East Bay in establishing this Project. If the shift in mindset from short- to long-term thinking is to be successful, it must happen at a young age, when students’ personal and professional lives are still taking shape.”

    Alexander Rose, Executive Director, The Long Now Foundation

  • “When students work in teams to solve challenges using long-term and futures thinking, it forces them to think critically and creatively about the subject matter. They become the owners and architects of their own learning. ”

    Dr. Lonny Brooks, Professor, Communications

  • “The Project is perfectly aligned with Cal State East Bay’s Pioneer spirit because it encourages students to consider long-term consequences and interactions in problem-solving, an area that higher education is largely overlooking today. Our students must be able not just to solve a problem – they must be able to define the deeper challenges underneath it, and to use critical thinking to navigate across multiple disciplines to address it.”

    Dr. James Houpis, Provost, CSUEB

  • “As an institution committed to producing the diverse leaders for our future, this exciting new partnership with the Long Now Foundation and others will help students develop a long perspective in which the last 5,000 years is thought of as ‘last week’ and the next 5,000 years is thought of as ‘next week’. Such perspectives are helpful in numerous industries with heavy research and development efforts. In the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, for example, decision makers must make decisions today for products and revenues that won’t be realized until many years into the future.”

    Dr. Stephanie Couch, Principal Investigator, CSUEB