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Dr. Peter C. Bishop

Founder and Executive Director of Teach the Future

Dr. Bishop is the Founder and Executive Director of Teach the Future, an organization whose mission is to encourage and support educators who want to include futures thinking in their classes and schools at all levels around the world. In 2013, Dr. Bishop retired as a Professor Emeritus of Strategic Foresight and Director of the graduate program in Foresight at the University of Houston.

He has published two books on Strategic Foresight: Thinking about the Future: Guidelines for
Strategic Foresight (2007) and Teaching about the Future: The Basics of Foresight Education
(2012), both with co-author Andy Hines. Dr. Bishop is a founding Board member and Chair of
the Membership Committee for the Association of Professional Futurists.

Dr. Bishop came to the University of Houston in 2005, having taught futures studies at the Clear Lake campus since 1982. Dr. Bishop started teaching at Georgia Southern College in 1973 where he specialized in social problems and political sociology. He received his doctoral degree in sociology from Michigan State University in 1974 and his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from St. Louis University where he also studied mathematics and physics. He grew up in St. Louis, Missouri where he was a member of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) for seven years. Dr. Bishop is married with two children and three grandchildren.

Peter Bishop, Ph.D.



Futures for All: Preparing Students for the Future by Actually Teaching them about the Future

In 1975, Dr. Calvin Cannon, Dean of Human Sciences and Humanities at the new University of Houston-Clear Lake, established the first degree in Futures Studies. He said, “We teach about the past, don’t we?  Why can’t we teach about the future?”  Good question, Dr. Calvin.  And we had good answers to that question 50 years ago – answers like, “You can’t teach about things that don’t exist.”  But today we know better.  While the future has not happened in reality, it exists in our minds and in our imagination.  From there, it guides our decisions and actions.  So the future is real and important.  Indeed futures studies and strategic foresight are an emerging academic discipline and a new professional practice.  A dozen or more universities offer graduate degrees in the subject.  Countless keynote presentations, corporate seminars and consulting engagements address the future.  But all of them involve only adults.  Who is speaking with young people about the future?  Relatively few, beyond “Do your homework, and you will be successful.”  Dr. Peter Bishop will address these questions in his keynote presentation – Why we should teach the future in school and what students will learn if the schools do so. 

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