General Notability Guidelines

How do you know if a topic merits an entry in the Open Foresight Hub? The answer is, “it depends”! Below you can find general guidelines to help determine:

  1. Where a topic belongs in the Open Foresight Hub
  2. If it warrants the creation of a new, stand-alone article

This guide is not designed to inform you on best practices for how to write or edit articles. For that information look to the Core Content Policies and the User Guide.

Where should I put my article?

Library Entries

If you’re considering indexing external material that was published outside of Open Foresight Hub, and you can provide a direct link to it, then the Library might be the right section.

It should be material which includes a specific futures or foresight topic and some form of analysis (thesis, body and conclusion). Materials that are not fully formed can potentially be part of the Futures namespace - we realize some compelling ideas need space, time and effort to develop - but they should not be placed within the Library.

In the spirit of Open Foresight, we only include material that is freely available to the public in the Library. In some cases, materials that are not public may be featured in the Encyclopedia. For example: if you wish to add an entry about a book, if the book has been made freely and legally available by the publisher, the entry may go in the library. Otherwise, it should go in the encyclopedia.

If you’re unsure or unable to create an article for a given text to put in the library, you can always propose content in the Propose Library Content section and other contributors can review, and possibly add, the proposed content to the Hub Library.

Library entries are NOT:

Documents or text that can only be accessed after fulfilling some sort of requirement. This could include, but is not limited to, payment or other value exchanges, providing personal information, creating an account, or subscribing. Scan results of possible signals. Content should include analysis of a topic. Information about publishers, periodicals, journals, or other similar organizations. This information would go in the Encyclopedia. Linking to a single publication, or issue from one of these would be acceptable if it meets the guidelines listed below.

Encyclopedia Entries

If you’re looking to write an article that provides comprehensive overviews or detailed explanations of information on futures, foresight, or related topics, then it likely goes in the Encyclopedia section.

Acceptable topics might include (but are not limited to):

  • Biographies of notable figures in the field
  • Information about an organization, its history, or works
  • Previous Wildcard, Black swan events, or similar
  • Summaries of books or other texts that are only accessible through physical print, behind paywalls or have other barriers to access.
  • Definitions and explanations of perspectives, approaches, or concepts. For example:
  • Perspectives include Strategic Foresight and the Foresight Competency Model, Integral Futures, Experiential Futures and ”La Prospective.” It would also include Critical Practice and Nonstandard Interpretations, which in turn would include Non-Western Knowledge Traditions and Decolonization of Futures.
  • Approaches include such items as Causal Layered Analysis, Three Horizons, Prototyping, Design Fiction, the Four Futures/Scenario Archetypes, Delphi and Backcasting.
  • Concepts include such items as the Six Pillars, Post-Normality & Complexity, “Futuribles,” Theory U and Social Change.

Encyclopedia entries are NOT:

Brief summaries of a single document, particularly if you are able to provide a link to the original text. These would go in the Library.

Futures Entries

The Futures section contains crowd-sourced summaries of different futures and the myriad of forces shaping them. These articles are living documents that are dynamically evolving, by both synthesizing the diversity of existing perspectives and seeking additional perspectives. If you are looking to state a point of view on the future of a specific topic, or forces shaping a topic, then Futures might be the appropriate section. This space is not for relatively static articles or ideas.

The futures namespace is for collaborative futures work. If it is a piece of work that you would like to share and receive commentary on but do not want others to edit or change, then this is not the space to put it. For that, we recommend publishing it externally and seeing if it meets the guidelines listed below for an addition to the Library.

Should you create a new article entry?

While we want the Open Foresight Hub to grow, not all topics or documents warrant its own article. The following guidelines can be used to determine if a topic or document merits the creation of a new, stand-alone article. Open Foresight Hub applies these standards to avoid indiscriminate inclusion of articles that could otherwise weaken the value of the project.

A topic is presumed to merit an article if:

  • It meets the general notability guideline (GNG) for the appropriate section: Library, Encyclopedia, or Futures.
  • It cannot be entirely or adequately covered by an existing Open Foresight Hub article.

Library Entries

For classic foresight materials a library entry is suitable for a stand-alone article when the item meets the following criteria:


  • Externally published
  • Publicly available
  • The document cannot have a barrier to access. This could include but is not limited to: payment or other exchanges of value, entering an email address, signing up for an account, or subscribing.
  • Demonstrates some level of analysis
  • It should involve interpreting, evaluating, and drawing meaningful conclusions. It can be qualitative or quantitative and encompasses considering relevant factors, exploring multiple perspectives, and examining various aspects related to the topic.
  • Time Horizon - Preferably, there is an explicitly stated or easily inferable time horizon.
    • If the time horizon is inferred then please explain why/how the time horizon was chosen.
  • An outlined foresight process and/or methodology
    • Ideally, the material most suitable for addition to the Library will explicitly outline any foresight processes and methodologies foresight processes and methodologies used.
    • While we understand it’s not always appropriate or feasible for all text to go into depth about the processes and/or methodologies they used, - Library content should ideally have an inferable process and/or methodology.

Library content is NOT

  • Blogs
  • News articles
  • Opinion pieces
  • Scan hits

Non-English Language Text

Our goal at Open Foresight Hub is to be as accessible and inclusive as possible, and that extends to the material we include in our Library. If you find something you think should be included in the Library and it is not written in English, that’s perfectly fine as long as the material meets the guidelines outlined above.

To facilitate navigation, it is important to indicate the language in which the material is written in the Quick Facts section of all articles included in the Library. If the text is provided in more than one language, list out all language options in the Quick Facts table. This will allow individuals to navigate and discover content in their preferred languages.

Currently, we do not have a process in place for article translations, so the content of articles on Open Foresight Hub should be written in English even if the source material is in another language. We appreciate your understanding and collaboration in maintaining a diverse and informative Library. We hope to add translation support for other languages in the future.

Encyclopedia Entries

An encyclopedia entry is suitable for a stand-alone article when the topic has:

  • Reliable sources: The topic includes external citation, endorsement, or adoption. These external sources are credible, trustworthy, and hold a reputation for providing accurate and verifiable information. It implies that the source has a demonstrated track record of factual reporting or analysis.These sources are independent of the subject. For example, advertising, press releases, autobiographies, and the subject's website are not considered independent.

And at least one of the following:

  • Impact and influence: If the topic has influenced or shaped the discourse, practices, or policies related to foresight or futures.
  • Expert recognition: The topic is recognized by academics, experts or practitioners of foresight.

If there is a topic you believe has impact and influence or expert recognition but you don’t have reliable sources you can propose encyclopedia content.

Futures Entries

In the spirit of collaboration, users are encouraged to build upon existing articles in the Futures section before starting a new entry. A Futures entry is suitable for a stand-alone article when the item has:

  • Three or more sources supporting the stance/viewpoint
  • Clear and concrete foresight elements such as:
    • Scenarios
    • Drivers
    • Trends
    • Issues
    • Plans
    • Projections
  • A clearly articulated point of view. Futures pages should put forward a point of view on a particular futures topic, rather than discuss the documents referenced.
  • Some level of original synthesis and analysis.
  • Cannot be adequately captured by an existing entry. If the new entry is outside the scope, topic, or point of view of a similar existing entry, a new page may be needed.

Splitting and merging Futures entries

If an existing article gets too long, complicated, or disproportionately covers a particular sub-topic or point of view, editors may choose to split it into two or more separate articles. Splitting articles is permitted as long as each resulting article meets the above requirements for stand-alone articles.

Similarly, if two or more similar articles are too short or insubstantial to exist as stand-alone articles, editors may choose to merge them into one.

The Futures section is not

  • Static - if you want to share your work in the futures namespace, you are inviting and encouraging others to edit, remix, share, and distribute it. If that is not what you want, we recommend publishing it elsewhere first and seeing if it fits in the library.


Last modified: 2023/07/26 17:25 by elizabethherfel