Professor John Ratcliffe

Head of Strategic Foresight

John Ratcliffe is President of The Futures Academy and, until 2009, was a Director of the Dublin Institute of Technology, where he remains as Emeritus Professor. In the past he has served as Secretary-General of the World Futures Studies Federation and Vice President of the European Futurists Conference. He acts as a consultant to countries, cities, companies, colleges and communities in the area of strategic foresight and is currently conducting several projects on the future of sustainable cities and sustainable real estate development. His current work focusses on the field of Leadership through Strategic Foresight.

John is a chartered planning and development surveyor with over forty years of experience. During this time, he has been an active member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, including as a former Chairman of the London Branch, and of the Urban Land Institute, having been the initial Chairman of the Policy and Practice Committee of ULI Europe.

Selected Professional History

  • 40+ years of professional experience in both the private and academic sectors
  • Widespread international experience, especially in Singapore, Hong Kong, the UK and Ireland.
  • In 2000, he was awarded a doctorate from Ulster University in Built Environment Futures
  • Visiting Professorships at Tsinghua University (China), Salford University, Lincoln University, the Sorbonne and the University of Hong Kong
  • Author of over 200 publications on land use, urban planning, real estate development and built environment futures matterss
  • Acted as Expert Advisor to the EU Council for the Regions and contributed to its report “Cities of Tomorrow”.
  • Previously ran his own consultancy practice, John Ratcliffe and Associates, and was variously a partner in several London firms – Anthony Brown Stewart, Ford Woods, Bernard Williams and Associates and Butler Rosyth
John Ratcliffe


  • Bachelor Degree in Estate Management (College of Estate Management, 1967)
  • Masters Degree in Urban & Regional Planning (University of Sussex, 1973)
  • Doctorate in Built Environment Futures (Ulster University, 2000)