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The coronavirus crisis has put the traditional forecasting models into question and increased the need for scenarios, says the Yearbook of Foresight Centre. On the basis of studies, the publication maps the development trends relating to the crisis and Estonia’s possible exit strategies from the corona crisis.

“The corona crisis has significantly changed the people’s behaviour patterns, and the traditional forecasting models have not been effective in this context,” Head of the Foresight Centre Tea Danilov said. “One of the indicators that the forecasting models have become useless is that suddenly everybody is speaking about the need for foresight and scenarios in order to reduce the prevailing great unpredictability in some way.”

Danilov thinks that the stabilisation of the behavioural patterns of businesses and the population is going to take some more time time. “Only then will it be possible to trust again the forecasting models drawn up on their basis. Until we cannot take into account the most probable development, we have to take into account the whole spectrum of development possibilities,” she added.

Based on the studies conducted in 2020, the recently published Yearbook gives an overview of Estonia’s possible development pathways for exiting the coronavirus crisis and in resolving the financing crisis in health care, and discusses Estonia’s progress in the shipping and maritime trade, as well as the country’s location on the global lines of power.

“The coronavirus crisis has put all countries on the starting line, and the development pathway they have chosen will determine how their societies will cope later,” Danilov said. “At the same time, the crisis will also give many opportunities to the economies of all countries, because during it, the global supply chains are reorganised and changes in people’s attitudes and preferences will take place.”

The Yearbook of the Foresight Centre can be downloaded at https://bit.ly/2OOgjTH (in Estonian).  

The Foresight Centre is a think tank at the Chancellery of the Riigikogu that analyses long-term developments in society and the economy. The Centre conducts research projects to analyse the long-term developments in Estonian society, and to identify new trends and development directions.