Cli Fi Smart Cities

Sure. Will get on this.


@amelia, maybe it is simpler to copy-paste something from this previous (and funded) application.

These are 342 words, just copy pasted. The headings are mandated by that particular application form.


The climate crisis urges us to imagine radically different economic systems. We aim to develop society’s power to imagine in this domain. Our contribution is creating a fictional world (like the universes of Tolkien or Star Trek), which runs on economies that do not exist, but could. We create it via a large-scale collaboration between sci-fi authors, artists and economists, and make it open source. Authors can then use it as the backdrop to their work: novels, films, games, illustration etc.

Global vision

The climate crisis urges us to imagine radically different economic systems. Economists of the past have produced powerful alternative visions, but their successors have focused on minor tweaks of the dominant model. Economic utopias live on in thousands of experiments large and small, from eco-villages to digital commons. These have produced valuable innovation, but they remain marginal and unsung.

This is problematic, because, to tackle climate change, we might need to question our economic models in depth. And yet, we cannot plan a transition to a world we cannot imagine. Our vision is to use art to provide world leaders and the public with an architect’s rendering of life outside of capitalism. Sci-fi and cli-fi art are a great fit for the task.

We design the project for large-scale, global collaboration. Thus, we channel it through digital spaces like online fora and wikis. We open source its result, so that anyone can adapt and use it for their own work.

Idea and theme

Worldbuilding is the activity of constructing an imaginary world, often for the purpose of acting as the backdrop for a creative endeavor (a book, a film, a video game). Developing an imaginary setting with coherent qualities such as a history, geography, and ecology is a key task for many science fiction or fantasy writers.

We want to develop an exciting open source world to set speculative fiction (sci-fi or fantasy) in. Unlike others, it pays attention to its economies. They should be radically different from our own, and yet believable in behavior, dynamics, institutions.

@yudhanjaya, you could use this + the call text to answer the two questions (if you need inspiration).

Thanks, @amelia and @alberto, super useful. I used a minor variation of this pitch above, wrote this for ‘how is this relevant to the themes of After Progress’ section:

Our project is an exercise in both worldbuilding and economics. To wit, it showcases five different economies - from classic Hayekian unregulated spaces to self-sufficient, circular economies running on extremely lean energy budgets to Benedictine worker economies where faith and community make for multi-generational projects that markets optimized for short-term wins can barely dream of. In doing so, it also sets the stage for exploring:

  1. The political histories of a postcapitalist future: the kind of people, movements and revolutions that bring about these changes, their interactions with each other, and how lasting social contracts are formed - from farmer’s revolutions to the punks of tomorrow
  2. Epistemology: within a more pluralistic approach to knowledge, titled aethnography, designed to foster more cross-domain connection and spaces for different strands of both qualitative and quantitative knowledge to connect and flourish
  3. Belief systems: including Risk Bushido, a code-of-honor philosophy built entirely around using concepts from Knightian economics, Taleb distributions, ergodocity and chaos theory to deal with a future inherent laden with risk
  4. Modelling how different types of societies would respond to risks such as more climate change, energy scarcity, and systemic collapse
  5. Edge interactions between different societies and systems of belief and governance

In addition to the stories themselves, our project provides a narrative platform for housing every type of story relevant to the After Progress themes, capable of supporting everything from cyberpunk dystopias to solarpunk survival, to explorations of rival economic theories spun up as new societies amidst what already exists.

Pitch done and sent.


@yudhanjaya, of course pitch calibration depends on who the intended reader is. In the spaces were we are in, I want to foreground the pairing of “science fiction” and “economics”.

Of course. To clarify, I used a very minor variant of your original pitch above for question 1. “Short Abstract/Pitch (What’s the story about?)- 300 words max”. The above response was for question 2. “Please explain how your proposed story speaks to the questions/themes of the exhibition.” So I reckon they did get the full double barrels, so to speak.

No worries, as I said: contexts are different. If you are writing to a space dominated by sci-fi authors, for them sci-fi will be obvious. In the ones I know best, we have to foreground it, explain what worldbuilding is, etc.

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That’s interesting:
Please give updates how the application goes :slight_smile:

We have just received the mail the pitch was selected for the next phase.

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Great! Can you share the email?

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Sent it via e-mail

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