Ghost in a Shell: The Scenario Tool and the World Making of Royal Dutch Shell
This article examines the history of the Royal Dutch Shell scenarios, from the first horizon scan exercise in 1967. It proposes that forward-looking scenarios were integrated in planning at Shell as tools for managing uncertainty in global time and space relations of oil after 1967. Specifically, the article proposes that Shell strategically used the scenarios to respond to arguments, emanating both from OPEC and from the Club of Rome, of oil as a limited resource. Shell used the scenarios to create images of a future oil market dominated by innovation, creativity, and sustainable solutions.