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Dr. Christin Pfeiffer

Head of Futures Literacy and Foresight, Social and Human Sciences, UNESCO

Christin Pfeiffer is the Head of the Futures Literacy and Foresight Programme at UNESCO/SHS in
Paris. She deals with a number of projects related to futures and foresight at international level,
coordinates the HLCP Foresight Network and represents UNESCO/SHS in relation to foresight
initiatives related to the UN Common Agenda.

Prior to her appointment at UNECO, Christin acted as a Senior Policy Advisor at the Italian Ministry
for Economic Development, where she oversaw intergovernmental negotiation processes, particularly in
the context of the Italian G20 Presidency in 2021 and the G7 Presidency in 2017 in the field of digital
economy and the green transition. She represents Italy in the OECD Committee on Small and Medium
Enterprises (CMSEE), as well as at the Committee on Industry, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE).

For five consecutive years she acted as Secretary General of the International Network for SMEs
headquartered in Rome. Its multi-stakeholder community deals with global policies for innovation and
SME competitiveness. Christin has managed several programmes on efficient policy coordination,
development and inclusive growth and created the INSMEAcadmey, offering continuous learning with a
focus on multilateral policy dialogues, foresight and innovation management. She is a frequent lecturer
on business planning and change management.

She acted as a member of the Horizon 2020 Advisory Group of the European Commission on
“Innovation in SMEs”, was part of the Evaluation Committee of UNCTAD’s “Women in Business”
Award 2014 and of the Judge Committee of the Prince Abdulaziz Bin Abdullah Award 2015 in Saudi
Arabia. Her PhD in Political Sciences/international cooperation targeted future scenarios on
multilateralism with particular interest in the development of global governance models against the
backdrop of current megatrends as climate change and emerging technologies.



An invitation to experiment new ways of sensemaking together

We would love to be able to predict the future, we tend to develop patterns to reduce and “govern” uncertainty.

Whenever new ideas come up, do we say “yes, and…” or “no, but…”? Whether it is agreement or disagreement, collective intelligence can emerge when we give space to complexity. By enabling the interplay of different ways of perceiving and making sense of the world, we can identify novelty.

By relating this to futures – having no data and facts to base our evidence on – how can we strike a balance between planning and paying the right attention to what is, but also to what is not?

This keynote will explore in an interactive way how to open up to uncertainty as a given and allowing ourselves to experiment new ways of sensemaking together for the benefit of contributing to addressing global challenges.

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