In the Wake of Urbanisation: How Rural Regions Can Use Futures Thinking To Shape Their Futures

In the Greek tale of 'the lion and the man', Androcles removes a thorn from a lion's foot. Years later, the lion repays the favour when facing Androcles in the Roman Colosseum. The lion affirmed their mutual friendship and persuaded the Romans to pardon Androcles from battle. Afterwards, people would say "This is the lion, a man's friend; this is the man, a lion's doctor". This metaphor is of how a man and a lion benefitted by helping each other, but what lessons are there for small rural regions to learn from large cities?

As a futurist, I respond from within Inayatullah’s Six Pillars framework by mapping the present and the business as usual future of rural migration and urbanisation, and using case studies that pull cities and settlements toward the business as usual future. Within the discussion, I use indexes to identify trends and projections and as guidelines for shaping cities. Finally, core variables from the case studies are integrated into scenarios to help clarify alternative and preferred 2030 futures for rural settlements.

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Dr Colin Russo, Managing Director,

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