Rafael Ramirez

Rafael Ramirez

Director of the Oxford Scenarios Programme and Professor of Practice

Saïd Business School
University of Oxford
Park End Street


Rafael is the first Professor of Practice at the University of Oxford. 

Rafael directs the award-winning Oxford Scenarios Programme and he is Academic Director of the Oxford Networked Strategy Lab.

He is one of the world’s leading experts on scenario planning. As a researcher and advisor, Rafael has worked extensively with NGOs, corporations, inter-governmental organisations, governments and think tanks. He is the author of several books and many scholarly papers, and he sits on the editorial boards of three scenario planning journals.

Rafael holds a PhD from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and master’s degrees from York University in Toronto and Oxford.

Prior to coming to Oxford, Rafael was part of Shell’s scenarios team and Professor of Management in HEC in Paris. Rafael is fluent in French, Spanish, and English and he has worked on all continents.


  • Scenario planning
  • Interactive and networked strategy
  • Aesthetics and business

Read an interview with Rafael in the Oxford Times.


Rafael talks about the Oxford Scenarios Programme

Park End Street

Designing the Oxford Scenarios Programme


Rafael researches scenario planning and, together with colleagues, he has developed the practice so rigorously that it has now become a research methodology.

Rafael’s work on strategic innovation is considered to have been ahead of its time.

He is a co-developer of the Oxford Scenario Planning Approach, which focuses on how scenarios planning can be used to support strategy and public policy. 

Rafael’s groundbreaking research on interactive value and networked strategy has led to widely cited papers in the Harvard Business Review, the Strategic Management Journal and to the development of the Oxford Networked Strategy Lab.


Scenario planning – a strategic approach for engaging the future

  • Journal article
  • European Court of Auditors Journal
  • Rafael Ramirez,
  • Trudi Lang

Seven sure-fire ways to do scenario planning badly: a guide to poor practice

  • Journal article
  • Long Range Planning
  • Rafael Ramirez,
  • Trudi Lang,
  • Gayle Peterson
Professional Service Firms
  • Rafael Ramirez,
  • Nicholas Rowland,
  • Matthew Spaniol,
  • Andrew White

Why investing in procurement makes organizations more resilient

  • Journal article
  • Harvard Business Review
  • Rafael Ramirez,
  • Ciaran McGinley,
  • Steve Churchhouse

Scenario planning in science‐centric organizations(opens in new window)

  • Journal article
  • Futures and Foresight Science
  • Rafael Ramirez,
  • Ciaran McGinley,
  • Jenni Rissanen
See more publications


Rafael has designed, prepared and run many scenario planning and interactive strategy engagements on all continents.

He has worked with a very wide range of world-leading organisations, such as EDF, the World Economic Forum, Atkins Global and BMW.

Rafael has served as Visiting Professor of Scenarios and Corporate Strategy at Shell International and Chairman of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Strategic Foresight. Since 2016, Rafael has been an advisor to Strategy 50.

He is a co-founder of normanpartners, which helps organisations to gain the advantage in their networked world of business. 


Rafael is a top-rated teacher and the programme he directs (the Oxford Scenarios Programme) has won an award for excellence.

He teaches on:

  • Oxford Scenarios Programme
  • Oxford Networked Strategy Lab
  • Consulting and Coaching for Change
  • Custom Executive Education programmes (for companies such as AT Kearney, BMW, O2, Rolls-Royce and Scottish Water).