Theory-infused and policy-relevant: On the usefulness of scenario analysis for international relations

ABSTRACT

Foresight exercises are increasingly popular among different actors across the globe. Particularly in the context of uncertainties in world affairs, decisionmakers are increasingly relying on forward-reasoning to inform their policy. Yet international relations (IR) scholarship is still hesitant to adopt a scenariobased approach. We argue for the use of scenario analysis as a complementary method that is both disciplined and creative. Through scenario analysis, IR scholars simultaneously remain rigorous and provide policy-relevant input that grasps the dynamics of unpredictability of realworld issues. The article discusses the Multiple Scenario Generation method
as an unconventional but useful tool, elaborates on its theoretical considerations and concludes with four innovations that scenario analysis can provide for IR scholarship.

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SAKHRI Mohamed
SAKHRI Mohamed

I hold a bachelor's degree in political science and international relations as well as a Master's degree in international security studies, alongside a passion for web development. During my studies, I gained a strong understanding of key political concepts, theories in international relations, security and strategic studies, as well as the tools and research methods used in these fields.

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