Increasing complexity and the greater rate of change in the global economic system is creating a challenging planning environment. The systemic nature of the global environment is so complex that it is unrealistic to assume we will have sufficient information to reduce uncertainty in order to use traditional planning methods. Surprises – both negative and positive – are every day challenge to national decision-making. In my presentation I will use extreme events as a key to this world of surprises. The requirements of uncertainty and examples of potential solutions are illustrated by two cases, Finland and South-Korea.