Our Future World (Preview)

2050: It’s up to us.

At Arup, I work as a foresight practitioner, where my job is to consider the future of the built environment and how today’s designs can make an impact; as well as thinking about the future impact we want to make to consider how we can design things today to achieve a future that is fit for us all.

Photo courtesy of Arup

By Jonelle Simunich, Senior Foresight Strategist, Arup

In writing Arup’s 2050 Scenarios: Four Plausible Futures, a report recently published envisioning city life in 2050, we struggled when we got to when we got to one particular scenario, the Post-Anthropocene. While the other three scenarios (Human Inc., Extinction Express, and Greentocracy) consider both positive and negative aspects for society and natural systems. The challenge for Post-Anthropocene—where both society and planetary conditions improve—lied in that we all thought we knew what the positive future would looked like; harmonious, green, peaceful, plentiful, and so on. This is meant to be the future we all want to see, to live in, to inhabit, yet it was the most difficult to envision…

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From Design Museum Magazine Issue 015