“Envision, Design, Invent: Alternatives and Preferred Futures of Global Experiences in 2050”のご報告
Report on Session F
“Envision, Design, Invent: Alternatives and Preferred Futures of Global Experiences in 2050”
Brian Masshardt (Musashi University)
What would life be in 2050? What would the cities we live in look like in the future? Would we be following the same lifestyle or the same cultural practices? These were some of the intriguing questions that kicked off Session F by the speaker of the event, Professor Brian Masshardt of Musashi University. This hour and a half long session introduced the field of future studies that allowed participants to envisage what might lie in the future. Prior to the session, participants were given out a survey in which they answered a set of questions such as what the future in 2050 might seem like or what they were most anxious about in the future. This survey, which has also been conducted among university students in Japan, indicated that those students were worried about the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change in the future. Professor Masshardt noted that creativity and originality are important elements when imagining the future. Such methodology of study has enabled students to initiate fascinating projects describing their future and what they might want their cities to look like in subsequent times. Future studies have inspired young students to think about issues such as sustainability and technology when imaging their future. Furthermore, Professor Masshardt noted that future studies should not be considered as predictions about the future; rather, envisioning ideas and images of the future depends upon the present trend and emerging global issues. Thus, future studies can be summarized as “the systematic study of possible, probable and preferable futures.”
During the Q&A round, one of the participants asked if future studies have any scientific methodology and if they use any quantitative data for their analyses. Professor Masshardt answered that the studies have different ranges from both technical and humanistic aspects. Future studies employ various methodologies, one of which is the Six Pillar Approach that uses techniques to describe one’s future using mapping and metaphors. The interactive session further allowed the participants to give their own personal opinions about the future in 2050; some participants expected to take time off work while others imagined the future of their children.
Lastly, as a final take-away for the session, the participants were reminded that future studies truly require them to get back to being children who see the future through their own global experiences. Professor Masshardt emphasized that these children in participants can allow them to be as creative and original as they can to visualize how the future might be in 2050.
Shimuran Kitahara (Undergraduate School of Law, Nagoya University)