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Since the Covid-19 outbreak shocked the world with its unprecedented consequences, the concept of scenarios, although not a recent notion, has become more prominent as a key concept to assess the resilience of strategies.

Scenario analysis provides a structured method to identify a range of potential long-term futures allowing companies to understand the climate-related risks relevant to their business and how these may evolve over time. Companies can then identify strategies to be resilient in these different futures.

The content of this paper is based on our experiences from working with companies in defining scenarios, identifying their climate-related risks and opportunities in these scenarios and assessing whether their strategy is future-proof.


This paper summarizes the key practical lessons that we advise companies to consider when starting their scenario analysis journey. It is intended to provide a short overview of essential considerations when starting their scenario analysis, such as:

  • Scenario analyses differ from traditional risk management and can be used in a broader context;
  • Scenarios do not depict what the future will be, but what it could be;
  • Scenario analyses will help companies be (more) future-proof;
  • Companies should not quantify scenarios too early in the development stage, as the qualitative storyline is a key starting point;
  • Scenarios should follow certain principles which we call PICTURA: they need to be Plausible, Innovative, Inclusive, Credible, Tailored, Unique, Rigorous, Relevant and Articulated;
  • To get started, companies should define the scope of their scenario analysis;
  • Companies should not forget the stakeholder engagement dimension: it is crucial for success;
  • Companies should not take existing public scenarios for granted, but leverage on them.

Contact

For more information please conact Anne-Cecile Moreno, senior manager Sustainability or Wim Bartels, partner Sustainability.