Nordic foresight workshop provided an introduction to audit planning

The Nordic foresight workshop arranged by the NAOF provided an overview of audit planning and the work of supreme audit institutions at international and at agency level. The goal of the workshops was to provide practical examples of the application of future-oriented thinking and to outline the next steps.

The National Audit Office organised on 30-31 January 2019 a Nordic foresight workshop for representatives of its sister agencies abroad. In addition to the Nordic workshop, the NAOF also arranged a Finnish foresight workshop, which provided further information about the themes discussed in the event and processed them further.

The workshop leaders were Adjunct Professor Matti Kamppinen from University of Turku and JP Jakonen from Integral Foresight Finland. The keynote speakers for the Nordic workshop were Stephen Sanford from GAO, Andreas Bolkart from ECA, Alec Morton from University of Strathclyde, and Ahti Salo from Aalto University. Speakers for the Finnish workshop also included Jaana Venkula, as well as Mari Hjelt from Gaia Consulting Oy.

The aim of the Nordic workshop was to share observations of the current role of foresight in different organisations, as well as to share the outlines of desired and required next steps. Achievement of a common understanding of the importance of foresight work and its links to audit work can be facilitated through open dialogue. The idea of the Finnish workshop was to make foresight work more approachable from the perspective of audit activities.

Based on the comments from the participants, there is some variation between the Nordic audit institutions in the level of knowledge of foresight work, as well as use and organisation of foresight work in connection with audit work. The foresight workshops also contributed towards a common Nordic perspective on the significance and future trends of foresight work. In addition, they generated a range of ideas on how to continue to develop foresight work in co-operation.