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Mind the Future Lab

“Mind the future” is the laboratory started in 2018 with the aim of envisioning airport industry and aviation sector scenarios right up until 2030, in support of far-sighted and integrated strategic planning necessary for facing emerging challenges.

Scenario planning is a decisive activity for any organization wishing to remain competitive and dynamic over time. Several airport operators, in various parts of the world, are in the process of co-planning for the future.

This process of reading and interpreting future trends in relation to airport ecosystems has been conducted on the basis of two criteria:

  • adoption of a multidisciplinary and transversal mindset in approaching problems and collaborative reflection and research;
  • consultation with stakeholders on the output, engaging opinion formers and decision makers in the upgrading and refinement of the internally generated framework.

Imagining a variety of possible future scenarios requires an understanding of network nodes and interconnections between industry actors, the use of redundancy analysis to assess the same situation from varying and opposite points of views, the asking of the right questions, and the identification of macro trends and impacting factors that, individually or separately, may dictate the survival and success of airport systems in the future.


  • DIGITAL PLATFORM: a digital platform designed and set up to allow dialogue and the exchange of ideas, opinions and 360° knowledge between the SEA community, stakeholders and opinion leaders.
  • SMART PEOPLE: 23 young managers, supported by 7 senior managers as tutors - with solid knowledge and skills and a passion for team research, opinion sharing, and in-depth analysis of issues.
  • DIGITAL LIBRARY: over 400 sources, including databases, reports, papers and articles on the evolution of the aviation industry.


  • Megatrends, Risks & Sustainability
  • Institutional Market Design
  • Airlines Business Model
  • Airport Competition
  • Ground Transportation & Airports
  • Airport's Ownership
  • Disruptive Technologies for Aviation


  • A team of 3 to 4 people were assigned to each issue in order to generate know-how and organize scheduling, common work methods and a timetable of deadlines.
  • A tutor was assigned to support each team, having the task of facilitating work on the orientation of research, the sourcing of documents and the identification of stakeholders and exports to engage in the consultation process.
  • Both team members and tutors developed their reflections drawing on a knowledge library, which was further enriched with their own contributions.
  • The teams met regularly, alternating between moments of sharing and open discussions. The outputs of each team were shared across the teams in order reciprocally fertilize further work and discussions.
  • The teams engaged a panel of various external stakeholders in evaluating the scenario hypotheses. Each team, together with its tutor, mapped its stakeholder audience, and engaged it through its relational network.

The scenarios were researched and developed over a six-month period that saw 13 plenary workshops to present progress and numerous work sessions independently managed by the various teams. The project's final output is expected in the first half of 2019.