Floyd, J., Burns, A., and Ramos J., 2008, A challenging conversation on Integral Futures: embodied foresight & trialogues, Journal of Futures Studies, vol. 13, no. 2, pp. 69-86.


Introduction

At the heart of an integral approach to any sphere of activity and inquiry is inclusion of the greatest possible number of perspectives, and practitioner reflection. Many practitioners associated with the Masters course in Strategic Foresight at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, Australia have proposed that Integral Futures Studies and Foresight practice represents a revolutionary development in the field, with potential to bring about ground shifts at least as significant as the earlier interpretive and critical waves.

This emergence has been led by Slaughter’s call for Integral Methodological Renewal: the development of futures methodologies consistent with and based on the principles of Integral Theory, especially, but not exclusively, as articulated by the philosopher Ken Wilber (Slaughter, 2003; Slaughter, 2004). To date, methodological renewal has focused on expanded and new tools and techniques. Methodology, though, is about more than the tools used: it involves careful attention to the stance taken by the practitioner in the use of tools to enact knowledge and understanding.

This is particularly so for Integral Futures methodologies: Richard Slaughter and Joseph Voros have stressed the extent of the demands placed on the Integral Futures practitioner, and have highlighted the need for specific focus on his or her development. We contend in this article that practitioner stance is not simply of equal importance to the tools used, but is the primary factor in realising the benefits of Integral Futures methodologies.

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