The futures of futures studies
Pushing the boundaries of futures thinking
27 October 2023 (Friday), -, ONLINE


Contemporary lifestyles and habitats, albeit with strong diversities in the various regions of the world, clearly show the incremental prevalence of selfishness, the destruction of environmental contexts (which is totally unrelated to the actions of the other more than ten million living species), the proliferation of ‘non-places’, i.e. the opposite of what is indispensable to sustain the human adventure: spirituality, sociality, security, economy and well-being.

The percentage of human beings aware of the negative role inherent – in addition to the increase in inequalities – in administrative limits, boundaries and barriers, physical obstacles, and especially psychological obstacles that aggravate separations and isolation is negligible.

We need to be able to reverse the course again: to understand how ‘Insipiens’ can become ‘Sapiens’ again; how to change the mentality of our time; how to free ourselves from clichés; how to truly ‘care for the common home’ and head towards the “ecocene”.

Those involved in the planning, building and transforming of physical spaces – our habitats – should primarily engage in what may seem like the opposite of their work: determining “”places”” instead of “”non-places””; interweaving “”built”” / “”unbuilt””, “”nature”” / “”artifice””; contributing to the definition of “”living environments”” that at every scale foster positive co-existences. In this sense, the issues addressed by the “”Center for Near Space”” / “”Italian Institute for the Future”” in investigating possible habitats in the Fourth Environment generate interesting spin-offs on terrestrial habitat issues: frugal approach, recycling of all resources, energy issues, agro-food needs, opportunities for an “”archaeological approach”” not only in areas affected by rising sea levels.