Fuzzy Cognitive Maps for futures studies : a methodological assessment of concepts and methods

J.J. Jetter, K. Kok

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

99 Citations (Scopus)


Fuzzy Cognitive Map (FCM) modelling is highly suitable for the demands of future studies: it uses a mix of qualitative and quantitative approaches, it enables the inclusion of multiple and diverse sources to overcome the limitations of expert opinions, it considers multivariate interactions that lead to nonlinearities, and it aims to make implicit assumptions (or mental models) explicit. Despite these properties, the field of future studies is slow to adopt FCM and to apply the increasingly solid theoretical foundations and rigorous practices for FCM applications that are evolving in other fields. This paper therefore discusses theoretical and practical aspects of constructing and applying FCMs within the context of future studies: based on an extensive literature review and the authors’ experience with FCM projects, it provides an introduction of fundamental concepts of FCM modelling, a step-wise description and discussion of practical methods and their pitfalls, and an overview over future research directions for FCM in future studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-57
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • mapping approach
  • mental models
  • knowledge
  • scenarios
  • stakeholders
  • integration
  • management
  • policy
  • tool

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