The futures of agency
Exploring the liminal spaces between action and responsibility
26 October 2023 (Thursday), 14:00-15:20, imagine2

Pitfalls and opportunities of the space economy between now and 2050 and beyond

Along with increasing interest in space exploration, driven by both governmental and business initiatives, the potential risks and challenges associated with space activities are enormous and underline the importance of responsible practices, international cooperation and the preservation of outer space as a global common good.
Using a multi-method approach, we worked to link systems thinking with space futures in order to go beyond the litany level extolling the virtues of space travel or arguing against space travel due to the problems on Earth. We used Causal Layered Analysis to go deeper, to uncover the core assumptions of our space futures. This is likely the first use of CLA to space futures.
The intention is to move from numerous litanies to the systems that support these litanies, the worldviews that are used to make sense of them (no limits, the destiny of humanity) to the core metaphors.
On these premises, we also propose to recognize possible dynamics in the short period in Space economy through the systems archetype perspective. Taken together, we have three lenses offering complementary views: on the short period (5-15 years from now) with systems archetypes, on the medium term (20-40 years) with strategic scenarios, on the long period (beyond 2050) with CLA.
The insights emerging through these lenses could help us avoid the system traps and imagine a brighter future based on renewed social agreement, whether on a space station or on celestial bodies in our solar system.
(second author: Pietro Guerrieri)

Teaching fellow
Department of Sociology and Social Research, University of Trento
Researcher and founder
SKOP├Ča Anticipation Services