Guest Blogger: Len Tashman previews Winter 2012 issue of Foresight


The Winter 2012 issue of Foresight is now available. Here is Editor Len Tashman's preview:


Our last two issues featured Steve Morlidge’s Guiding Principles for managing an organization’s forecasting process. You can see the summary table of these principles on page 31. With this issue, we continue their development by presenting commentaries from researchers, consultants, and practitioners who have devoted their professional careers to the forecasting function. Alec Finney sums it up perfectly:

Steve Morlidge has produced a practical handbook to Scott Armstrong’s encyclopedia of forecasting principles. Steve’s five key themes are just that – the areas that every forecaster and planner needs to get right to deliver actionable information
for decision makers.

The advances in technology through broadband, computational capabilities, and the Internet open possibilities for virtually immediate analysis and interpretation of streamed data. In his article Stream Analytics for Forecasting, Patrick McSharry shares with us his perspectives on the forecasting challenges and opportunities from data streaming.

Our section on Forecasting Methods presents Scott Parrott and colleagues’ article on Forecasting Rounds of Golf. The golf industry has been under financial stress due to local, national, and global recessions and the consequent decline in tourism at vacation areas. As a result, it is paying more attention to improved forecasting methodology, including statistical modeling and judgmental input. Using data from a Myrtle Beach golf course, the authors  combine a statistical model of the trend and seasonal patterns in golf demand with the application of the analytic hierarchy process to extract the judgmental forecast adjustments of golf-course experts. It’s an interesting case study.

The U.S. Presidential Election

Election forecasting will be alive and well in 2012. Many websites now provide up-to-date campaign, polling, and bellwether information and show how the data extrapolate to the November elections. One of the first of these was the Pollyvote. Now the originators of this website share with us The PollyVote’s Year-Ahead Forecast of the 2012 U.S. Presidential Election.

Does the Presidential Candidate’s Campaign Affect the Election Outcome? Successful election forecasters and scholars (such as historian Allan Lichtman) have dismissed the importance of campaigning in the outcomes of U.S. presidential elections, believing instead that it is basically the incumbent’s record of performance that determines his or her party’s chances of retaining the White House. Richard Nadeau and Michael Lewis-Beck report that their reading of the forecasting models indicates otherwise: namely that, in a close election, the quality of the campaign can make a telling difference. And the November election is shaping up to be quite close indeed.

The winter 2012 issue concludes with a glimpse at Daniel Altman's new book, Outrageous Fortunes: The Twelve Surprising Trends That Will Reshape the Global Economy.


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About Author

Mike Gilliland

Product Marketing Manager

Michael Gilliland is a longtime business forecasting practitioner and formerly a Product Marketing Manager for SAS Forecasting. He is on the Board of Directors of the International Institute of Forecasters, and is Associate Editor of their practitioner journal Foresight: The International Journal of Applied Forecasting. Mike is author of The Business Forecasting Deal (Wiley, 2010) and former editor of the free e-book Forecasting with SAS: Special Collection (SAS Press, 2020). He is principal editor of Business Forecasting: Practical Problems and Solutions (Wiley, 2015) and Business Forecasting: The Emerging Role of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (Wiley, 2021). In 2017 Mike received the Institute of Business Forecasting's Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2021 his paper "FVA: A Reality Check on Forecasting Practices" was inducted into the Foresight Hall of Fame. Mike initiated The Business Forecasting Deal blog in 2009 to help expose the seamy underbelly of forecasting practice, and to provide practical solutions to its most vexing problems.

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