The NYU Center for Global Affairs' Scenarios Initiative To Hold Panel Series on the Future of Pakistan in 2020

Global Pakistan experts to develop alternate “scenarios” for its government and foreign policy position over the next decade

NEW YORK, April 13, 2011 - The Center for Global Affairs (CGA) Scenarios Initiative (, within the New York University School of Continuing and Professional Studies (NYU-SCPS), returns with a new panel in April, this time focusing on Pakistan in 2020. Led by CGA Professor Michael Oppenheimer and his research team, the Scenarios Initiative will bring together a wide range of global foreign policy, security, and economic experts on Pakistan to develop plausible alternate futures for the South Asian country. Coming on the heels of such previous Scenarios workshop panels on China, Russia, Ukraine, and Turkey, Pakistan 2020 funding has been provided by the Carnegie Corporation of New York.

The NYU Center for Global Affairs Scenarios Initiative is a mediated workshop series designed to produce cross-disciplinary, forward-looking thinking on countries and issues critical to U.S. national interest. By gathering experts from diverse areas of expertise and nationalities to participate in scenario-building workshops, the Initiative aims to raise the quality of U.S. foreign policy by improving policymakers’ understanding of and reaction to change.

The latest Scenarios Initiative arrives at a critical tipping point where intense scrutiny on foreign policy forecasting is now yielding news-making events such as this month’s release of Dan Gardner’s book Future Babble, the announcement of the U.S.-government-sponsored 2011 Prediction Tournament, and the upcoming Wikistrat Grand Strategy Competition in geopolitical analysis. Unlike predictive and forecasting formats, the Scenarios Initiative offers a more effective tool designed to challenge the mindsets policymakers bring into policy debates by presenting alternative narratives that capture less conventional, but plausible, views of the future. By fostering imaginative thinking about the future, based on acute observation of existing potential seeds of change, scenarios serve to expose alternate paths inherent in the present, sharpen debate about prevailing trends, and reveal the limited shelf life of extant conventional wisdom about the future and America’s role in it.

For more information about the CGA Scenarios Initiative or to obtain copies of the reports, please visit or, or follow on Twitter at 

EDITORS: For more information about the CGA Scenarios Initiative, please contact Cheryl Feliciano at

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