For thirty years Riel has been co-creating innovation, leadership, and transformation in both the public and private sectors around the world. He is one of the world’s leading strategic foresight designers and practitioners. Currently, Riel holds the position of Head of Foresight at UNESCO in Paris. Previously he has worked as a senior manager in the Ontario public service (Ministries of Finance; Universities; and Industry) and for some thirteen years in total at the OECD in Paris (Directorates of Economics; Science & Technology; Education; Territorial Development; Development Centre; International Futures Programme). In 2005 he founded an independent consultancy – xperidox (which means knowledge through experience) to advise clients on how to use the future more effectively. Since 1988, when he managed his first major participatory foresight exercise (Vision 2000), Riel has designed hundreds of applied futures projects around the world, large and small scale, public and private. He is an accomplished and innovative designer of processes for using the future to make decisions in the present.
Riel is an experienced keynote speaker, project manager, master of ceremonies, university lecturer, workshop leader, and group facilitator. He is widely published, with works that cover topics such as the future of innovation, research, money-finance, public services, education, the Internet, identity, information technology, the knowledge society, regional development, health, universities, telepresence, etc. Riel has an extensive international network and a solid track record of creativity.
Specialties: Bringing decision-makers to question the assumptions underlying current choices and exploring the potential of the present. Specific sectors: The future of money (financial sector). The Future of Schooling and Universities (Education). The Future of Cyberspace (Internet, networking). The Future of Technology (from nano to AI) The Future of Governance.