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Lubabalo Mgudlwa

Futurist Profile


Lubabalo Mgudlwa

Foresight Researcher: The Presidency Republic of South Africa

Education: MPhil in Innovation and Development (In pursuit)
PGDip in Futures Studies
PGDip in Marketing Management
BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics
BTech Business Administration
BTech Project Management
National Diploma in Management
Advanced Programme in Risk Management

Lubabalo answered a few questions about his perspective and on being a futures thinker.


You identify yourself as an African futures thinker or practitioner. How would you describe to the woman or man on the street what it is that you do in this regard?

Futures work should not be confused with prediction. Futurists are not in the business of predicting the future, instead, they provide plausible futures from the application of methodologies and tools where they first learn from the past, scan the horizons, look for signals and emerging trends and work towards the desirable future.

How many years have you worked as an African futures thinker / practitioner?

Two years.

In which countries or places have you had working experience as an African futures thinker / practitioner?

South Africa

In what languages have you undertaken futures / foresight related work or research?


What goal/s would you most like to reach with your work as an African futures thinker / practitioner?

To contribute to the current discourse of transformative innovation and inclusive development from an understanding of alternative innovation practices of marginalised communities and in relation to their wellbeing.



What is one of your favourite quotes about the future?

"The future is not something we enter. The future is something we create" - Leonard I Sweet

How would you describe the state of African futures thinking right now?

Over the past decade, there has been a recognition across African states, more especially in the public-policy space of the importance of futures work.

What is, in your opinion, the main barrier to uptake of futures knowledge by African institutions and organisations?

Lack of foresight capacity and capabilities for institutionalisation and an inculcation of a futures culture within African institutions.

If you were to give advice to someone who wants a career in African foresight / future studies, what would you say to him or her?

Read broadly across different disciplines so you can be able to understand linkages and relationships across different domains.

What are your recommended readings for every African futures thinker / practitioner?

Global Trends 2040 : A more contested world
Global Risk Report by the World Economic Forum

What are your recommendations for other favourite futures resources: websites, newsfeeds, mailing lists, associations, etc.?

Institute for Futures Research
Institute for Security Studies


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