The first approach, also known as the classical approach, focuses on the prediction of trends, and is based on the assumption that there is logic to evolution.
The futurists of this approach try to find patterns of logic, which express themselves in evolutionary processes, and to translate them to valid, reliable models.
The reliability of the models, according to a number of studies conducted during the last decade, runs on the average of 0.70 (Cornish, 1997).
Futurists identified with this approach use these models to draft forecasts in order to help organizations adapt themselves to newly developing trends.
This approach was dominant among senior decision makers in the 1940s and 1950s, primarily in the United States.
Today, futures’ research tends to focus on five ranges of future time. Just as there are institutions, organizations, institutes, and experts who are involved with research into different aspects and approaches of the future, it follows that they specialize in different ranges of time.
The following are the five ranges of future time discussed in the literature (Joseph, 1974): The immediate range—up to five years, the short range—five to ten years, the median range—ten to thirty years, the long range—thirty to fifty years and the very long range—fifty to one hundred years.