Jonathan Star is a workshop designer and facilitator. He specializes in scenario planning, a technique that uses stories about the future to change the minds and actions of teams so that they are better prepared for tomorrow. He uses scenarios to help clients with contingency planning, strategy, innovation and vision-setting. He also conducts scenario training seminars, building the capabilities of teams so that they are able to apply scenario practice across their organizations.
Jonathan learned the power of scenarios and future thinking at Global Business Network (GBN), a pioneering consulting and membership organization latterly owned by Monitor, a global strategy consulting firm. Between 2002 and 2012, he conducted over 60 scenario and strategy consulting projects for Monitor / GBN client organizations, dealing with issues as diverse as global climate change, Asian telecom markets, retail innovations, the future of work and classic car insurance. He designed and taught scenario training seminars, including leading and overseeing GBN’s flagship public course, Developing and Using Scenarios, one of the world’s premier scenario training programs. In 2013, he took his experience to Deloitte Consulting, where he continued to teach and practice scenarios and edited a future trends report Navigating the Next Wave of Globalization.
Since 2014, Jonathan has run his own independent practice, Scenario Insight LLC. His work has included: running scenario-themed Board retreats for 150 people at a major regional healthcare organization; facilitating strategy meetings for the divisional leadership of a global life sciences company; lecturing on data science and decision-making in a masters program at UC Berkeley; teaching a scenario training course on the Future of Food at Stanford University, and working with the US National Park Service to help parks plan for the uncertainty of climate change.
Overall, his work is largely focused in four areas, all of which are experiencing major change and forcing leaders to rethink fundamental aspects of their business: (i) healthcare, (ii) higher education, (iii) climate change and (iv) the consequences of more data and richer connectivity.
Earlier in his career, Jonathan worked in public policy in the UK. He was Director of Research at Scottish Enterprise. There he helped establish a Strategic Futures Team, an early example of an organization using trends research, foresight and scenarios to help influence policy and strategy. He also worked at London Business School, conducting research into business strategy and long-term corporate success. He holds degrees in Business Economics from the University of Nottingham and the University of Warwick in the UK.
Jonathan lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife and daughters. Away from work, he spends time traveling, playing soccer and hiking with his ever-lively Welsh Springer Spaniel.