Future Focus publications

"Congratulations on your excellent publication ‘Future Focus 1’, which communicated a potentially complex subject with impressive clarity."

Future Focus is a series of introductory pocket guides to help organisations understand important trends that may impact on them in the future.  

They are aimed at small and medium sized VCOs, but should provide a useful analysis for all VCOs interested in their external environment.  

There are eight guides within this series:

They look different!

We've been working hard, revisiting and revising our Future Focus booklets so that they're even easier and more practical to use. But don't worry, they still contain great information and tips.

If you would like to be kept informed about future issues of Future Focus, or if you've got any suggestions or feedback please email us

Do you support frontline organisations? Then you might be interested in our Future Focus bulk offer.

Future Focus 1
What will our funding be like in 5 years time?

Published: May 2007 


What does Future Focus 1 look at?  

  • Increased expectation of trading and charging for services 
  • Increasing complexity - contracts and loans 
  • Strategic and engaged grantmaking 
  • Stronger expectations of evidence 
  • The importance of cost and value 
  • Competition for funds

Download Future Focus 1 (PDF 2.55 MB)

Buy from £2.50

Future Focus 2
What will our volunteers be like in five years time?

Published: August 2007

Future Focus 2 cover image

What does Future Focus 2 look at?  

  • More 'professional' volunteering
  • The ageing population
  • Time poor society
  • Weaker ties to geographical communities
  • 'Consumer culture'
  • Changing ideas about volunteering

Buy from £2.50

Download Future Focus 2 (PDF 1.78 Mb)

Future Focus 3
How will we use new technologies in five years time?

Published: December 2007


What does Future Focus 3 look at?  

  • The wealth of information and choice
  • Increasing ease of making new connections
  • New ways to engage people
  • Lower barriers to publishing and broadcasting
  • Ability to work flexibly

Buy from £2.50

Download Future Focus 3 (PDF 669 Kb)

Future Focus 4
How is local democracy changing?

Published: March 2008

Future Focus 4 thumb cover

What does Future Focus 4 look at?  

  • Devolution of power
  • National minimum standards
  • Consolidation of public sevice contracts
  • Complexity of governance structures
  • More citizen engagement
  • Changing nature of community leadership

Buy from £2.50

Download Future Focus 4 (PDF 1.1 Mb)

Future Focus 5
How are social attitudes changing?

Published: April 2008

Cover image of Future Focus 5

What does Future Focus 5 look at?  

  • Poverty and the welfare state
  • Class and socio-economic status
  • Ethnicity
  • Personal identity
  • Different generations
  • Gender and family structures

Buy from £2.50

Download Future Focus 5 (PDF 1.4 Mb)

Future Focus 6
What will the UK population be like in 5 years' time?

Published: May 2009

Future Focus 5

What does Future Focus 6 look at?  

  • The ageing population
  • More diverse family and household structures
  • Increasing cultural and ethnic diversity
  • Rising levels of poverty and income inequality
  • Changes to work and employment
  • Levels of skills and educational attainment

Buy from £2.50

Download Future Focus 6 (PDF 2.64 Mb)

Future Focus 7
What will campaigning be like in 5 years' time?

Published: December 2009

Cover image of Future Focus 7

What does Future Focus 7 look at?  

  • Growth of consumer activism
  • More fluid activism
  • Growth of new technologies
  • 'Professionalisation' of campaigning
  • Increase in competition and coalitions
  • Marginalisation of dissent

Buy from £2.50

Download Future Focus 7 (PDF 2.59 Mb)

Future Focus 8
What will membership be like in 5 years' time?

Published: March 2010

Cover image of Future Focus 8

What does Future Focus 8 look at?  


  • Changing sources of identity
  • Changing attitudes to money and consumerism
  • Increasing availability of free information
  • The rise of the social web
  • Changing expectations of participation
  • The commodification of membership

Buy from £2.50

Download Future Focus 8 (PDF 3.21 Mb)

Special offer

Buy all eight guides for £16 (£13.50 NCVO Members) 

This series was commissioned by the Performance Hub, and written by NCVO Third Sector Foresight. From Future Focus 6 onwards, they are produced with funding as part of the Responding to Social Change workstream led by Third Sector Foresight.

Last updated at 11:08 Tue 18/Jan/11.


How will this affect your organisation? Have you considered it during your strategic planning? Can you share any interesting relevant links?

Log in or join for free to comment.