"Challenge design orthodoxy and prevailing technological visions"
"Last year, the futurologist Stuart Candy visited the department and showed us a wonderful diagram he used to clarify how we think about futures. Rather than one amorphous space of futureness it was divided into Probable, Preferable, Plausible and Possible futures. One of the most interesting zones was Preferable. Of course the very definition of preferable is problematic — who decides? But, although designers shouldn’t decide for everyone else, we can play a significant role in discovering what is and what isn’t desirable.
To do this, we need to move beyond designing for the way things are now and begin to design for how things could be, imagining alternative possibilities and different ways of being, and giving tangible form to new values and priorities. Designers cannot do this alone though, and many of the projects here benefit from collaborations, dialogues and consultations with people working in diverse fields such as ethics, philosophy, medicine, political science, fiction, psychiatry, economics, life sciences and biology.
This space of probable, preferable, plausible and possible futures allows designers to challenge design orthodoxy and prevailing technological visions so that fresh perspectives can begin to emerge. It is absolutely not about prediction, but asking what if…, speculating, imagining, and even dreaming in order to encourage debate about the kind of technologically mediated world we wish to live in. Hopefully, one that reflects the complex, troubled people we are, rather than the easily satisfied consumers and users we are supposed to be."
Why do I blog this? an interesting description of how design can contribute to futures research.