Connecting History and Foresight for Unprecedented Innovation Journeys

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João José Pinto Ferreira
Anne-Laure Mention
Marko Torkkeli


It is common knowledge that history repeats itself! Maybe not literally, but patterns of behaviour likely dependent of the human nature, are probably prone to repeat themselves. So, one may wonder if looking back could help us prepare for a better future. Moreover, by looking back at the history of people and societies, we should all be able to have a better understanding of why things happen the way they do. This seldom happens, and when it does, it is happening within very limited circle of the society such as scholars and some politician circles, rarely overflowing to the whole society.

The point is that, what we see today is not very different from what has happened in the past. Let us go back to November 13, 1460, the day Prince Henry the Navigator, passed away in Sagres, leaving Portugal with an enormous debt. Despite that fact, Prince Henry was the “guiding force behind Portugal’s assimilation of nautical knowledge and its vast extension of maritime exploration for nearly four decades” (Kock, 2003, p.59). It is interesting that by that time intellectual property was already being managed. (...)

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