De-bias is a method for individuals and teams to identify weaknesses in their analysis by adopting a critical posture.

Uses of the method

  • Generic tool to check any analysis of the future for completeness
  • Checking publications for robustness
  • Resolving team disagreements
  • Can be used by peer reviewers or independent auditors


  • Forces the taking of different vantage points on the analysis
  • Teases out stakeholder objections in advance
  • Encourages divergent thinking in a safe environment


  • May take a lot of time if previous analyzes are unsound or very incomplete. This can be avoided by not trying to fix the analysis through this tool but returning to it when the analysis has been improved,

 Steps to complete

  • Ensure all participants now know that they are taking different critical vantage points and are no longer champions or supporters of the analysis.
  • Then take each vantage point in turn answering the questions in a critical and opposing mode. One way to do this is for team members to assume the views of a person or organization known to them who would adopt a contrary view.
  • When each vantage point has been considered review the outcome, consider the level of confidence in the analysis and revise or confirm the analysis as sound.
  • Add more Insights as new research to cover knowledge gaps
  • Determine the predetermined elements (almost certain hard trends) that will inform your strategic response: slow-changing phenomena e.g. demographic shifts, constrained situations e.g. resource limits, in the pipeline e.g. aging of baby boomers, inevitable collisions e.g. climate change arguments.
  • Capture critical uncertainties i.e.. variables, soft trends and potential surprises. Both these and the fixed elements will be key to creating scenarios and examining potential future paradigm shifts.
  • Capture unique insight into new ways of seeing that can be utilized by the organization.
  •  Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches, John W. Creswell

This method and your response can be shared with other members or kept private using the 'Privacy' field and through the 'Tag', 'Report' and 'Forum' functionalities. Use 'Tag' and/or 'Report' to aggregate your analyzes, or add a 'Forum' to ask others where they agree/disagree and encourage them to make their own analysis from their unique vantage point.

Click the 'Invite tab to send invitations to other members or non-members (colleagues, external experts etc.) to ask for their input. You can whether or not you want anonymous responses.  These can be viewed and exported within the Responses tab.

Further reference

Contact us
Even with all the advice and tools we have provided here starting a foresight project from scratch can be a daunting prospect to a beginner. Let us know if you need help with this method or want a group facilitation exercise or full project or program carrying out by us. We promise to leave behind more internal knowledgeable people who can expand your initiative for better organizational performance.

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