Selected examples from present state and seeds towards the future

Conducting foresight studies in the framework of ESPON implies a key concern about the implications that future developments may have in relation to territorial objectives, expressed in the Territorial Agenda 2020 for the European Union. The ESPON call for tender on “Possible European Territorial Futures” stands in the tradition of past ESPON foresight and territorial impact assessment studies. Different future scenarios and their territorial impacts are explored. In this way, new insight into possible future developments is produced, which supports policy-makers in assessing the robustness and ‘future-proofness’ of their policies against possible future trends.

Enhancing the understanding of possible territorial futures and consequences in particular with regard to the three foresight topics: a new place-based economic organisation as part of a circular economy, a European energy supply and consumption that is a 100% renewable and a collapse of the European property markets. The focus of it is on linking the foresight topics with territorial policy objectives, future development perspectives and on-going policy debates, throught the description of different study cases. Material and information concerning examples of the three specific foresight topics have been collected. These cases will also serve as working hypothesis for the forthcoming tasks.