Sunday, January 29, 2012

Delphi Methods (i)

Revised 8/29/16

1. Reminder: HW1 due by midnight


2. Today's Plan

The "Delphi Method"

Soon each person will 
use the Delphi method

- to extract group wisdom
- from the class
- on a question
  about the future

     Write down your
     question now:
    "When will _____ happen?"

. . . We will need
   a recorder
   for each question,
   to record results
. . . . . .Your nearest neighbor!

The person
whose question it is
could consider
using the results
in their term project

3. The Delphi Method
    - Background

It is a town in Greece
(named Δελφοί)

. . . do you know those Greek letters?

Delphi was the site of
the "Delphic Oracle"

. . . (the Oracle of Apollo,
      which was in Delphi)

. . . . . Apollo was a Greek god,
         a U.S. space program, &
         series of space ships


source of
wisdom or prediction

. . . same root as

. . . a crystal ball is
      an example of
      an oracle

Delphi Method: Invented at RAND Corp.

- One of the earliest publications on the Delphi Method:

- An early use of the Delphi method

      Made forecasts up to about 50 years into the future

      The 50 years is up!

      Anyone want to review the forecasts for a term project?

The Delphi method has been extended:

- Getting consensus among a group
-- not just about predictions

- Has become politically contentious among a small faction
      I tracked this down to find out why

Example Use of the Delphi Method

- Science and Technology Foresight Center
               formerly the
- Institute for Future Technology
                  part of
-National Institute of Science
  and Technology Policy
                 part of
-Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology
      but formerly (?) part of (?)
-Science and Technology Agency

Way back in 1995:

-Their team toured the U.S.

-Met with me

-Part of their consultation process

-Produced "Future Technology in Japan: Toward the Year 2025"

-Sent me a copy of
"Future Technology in Japan: Toward the Year 2020"

The series of predictions every 5 years

... ended with the 2035 edition

... we could try searching for it to see

... 2035 seems unavailable

... earlier editions may still be available

Summary: The Delphi method

- extracts
  "wise predictions"
  from groups

Well. . .
we are a group!

4. The Delphi Method
    - How it works

variations exist)

1. Formulate
    the question

. . . Should be
     "sharp and
- Futures Research Methodology V3.0,
Ed. by J.C. Glenn and T. J. Gordon

2. Present
    to participants

. . . Discuss, especially
      the most
      extreme opinions

. . . Important!
      Avoid conformism
      just to conform

. . . . . . "Campaigning"
            distorts the
            group wisdom

3. Participants
    - reconsider their answers
      in light of the discussion

4. Overall results include:

. . . median (why not mean?)

. . . depiction of the spread
     (e.g. middle 50%
             total range)

(Source: JC Glenn and TJ Gordon, eds. Futures Research Methodology V3.0, chap. 4, p. 10)

5. There is
no better time
to try it than now!

-I will help you thru it

-who needs a minute to
write down their question?

- nearest neighbor 
records results

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