top of page

Global Issues Problem Solving (GIPS)


Teams of four students or individuals in grades 4-12 and beyond apply a problem solving process to explore challenges and propose action plans to complex scientific, political, social, economic or technological problems of the future.

GIPS & the



  • PRE-PROBLEM SOLVING:  Students research the given topic.  Being informed about the issues involved prepares them to better deal with the particular problem they will be presented with. 


  • STEP 1:  The impetus for GIPS problem solving is the future scene, a scenario set into the future about the topic.  After reading and analyzing the facts presented in the future scene, challenges that might occur are brainstormed.  The sixteen most critical challenges are determined and written in a clear, concise format. 


  • STEP 2:  Consensus is reached on an underlying problem that stems from those challenges -- one of the major issues that needs to be addressed.


  • STEP 3:  Possible solutions to the underlying problem are brainstormed, and the best sixteen are identified and written with elaboration.


  • STEP 4:  Criteria that will be important in measuring the worth of the top eight solutions are identified.  


  • STEP 5:  grid is used, where solutions are ranked from 1-8  according to how well they meet each criterion.


  • STEP 6:  An action plan is developed for the best solution.

FPS completely set my path forward in life.  My experience with Community Problem Solving really engaged me with our local sister city's chapter and so many presentation and learning opportunities, preparing me to get into a dream college.  I still think through many problems consciously with the FPS approach in mind.

GIPS students develop the skills of


  • Teamwork


  • Communication


  • Research


  • Critical and creative thinking


  • Analysis


  • Synthesis


  • Evaluation




Students learn to apply these wonderful skills to situations that are futuristic, but are oriented to real life. 

Andy Pethan,

Byron High School math teacher, Rochester MN

bottom of page