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Scenario. The Future of History: A Cultural Perspective

Project: Research

Description

Human civilisation is built on ideas of the future. We all anticipate – whether through prediction, imagination or planning. Art, architecture and design provide a cultural context for ideas of the future, both as radical alternative and as objects of science and governance. Diverse craft traditions, design practices and technologies interact with political and social contexts, resulting in objects that hold our ideas of the future. The futures revealed in such material forms embody the perspectives and the values of the societies that produced them. Imagining new futures involves drawing on historical precedents, and notions about the future are a pervasive material presence in our everyday lives. Following successful completion of the V&A’s futures-related research project, ‘The Future is Our Business’, [ http://www.vam.ac.uk/content/articles/t/the-future-is-our-business-a-visual-history-of-future-expertise/] and series of ‘Visionaries’ podcasts [http://www.vam.ac.uk/b/blog/network/visionaries-podcast-series-launches], I am leading research in partnership with other museums and galleries, universities, industry and government agencies on how cultural institutions use the past to shape our ideas and provoke debate about the future. The Scenario project includes both the historical dynamics behind the imagination of futures, and current methods of futures construction in a range of institutions in partnership with Professor Jenny Andersson, CNRS Research Professor, Center for European Studies, Sciences Po, Paris and Co-Director at the Max Planck/Sciences Po Center on Coping with Instability in Market Societies; Professor Mary Ryan, Royal Academy of Engineering Research Chair in Nanoscience at Imperial College London; and Dr Elena Formia and Manuela Celi, Advanced Design Group, University of Bologna and Milan Polytechnic.
StatusActive
Effective start/end date1/01/12 → …

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