If you meet an expert on the road, kill her?


I’ve just come out of the experience of organising #lote4, Edgeryders annual event. If you missed it, this article on the latest edition of Dazed Magazine is a good primer.

As I watched the 4 min video I realised the discussions before, during and after the meeting are highly relevant to a topic that is top of mind for me at the moment.

Some of us are currently exploring the first of five waypoints on the way to futures literacy – learning the ability to look beyond one’s construction of reality.

We started by exploring how our individual perspectives on time affect this, departing from the work of Prof. Philip Zimbardo (summary and discussion here). One thing caught my attention:

What brings me to your example, Nadia. 10.000 years is a period of time that nobody dares (or cares) to think about, unless …

Yes, unless you are in charge of dumping nuclear waste somewhere. It’s funny, because I am from a place where this is going to happen now. Salzgitter, Germany has an abandoned Iron ore mine that is now going to be used as a repository - here’s a link to the official state propaganda site that says how safe it all is: goo.gl/ixdqI7

When they started even considering this “endlager” (sounds like endloesung, doesn’t it?) in 1982, I was already participating in the first -mostly violent-protests and now, 32 years later, they have won all the legal battles, and they will implement it. So, there is a notion of my own present: 32 years is a long time in my life. And then there is the mind-boggling idea, like, the next 10.000 years, there will be toxic, radioactive waste right underneath the place where I was born and where I grew up with family and friends.

Of course they say that everything is safe for the next 10.000 years. And here you can see the flaws of supposedly scientific / responsible / official assumptions at its purest.

Authority , those in power - will always tell you that the sun circles around the earth, and that you have to postpone gratification to be successful or that radioactive waste is safe for the next 10.000 years in Salzgitter. - @ThomasVisCom

When we say learning to look beyond our current construction of reality, we know that a key element is exposure to different perspectives. So how come political and cultural elites tend to be so homogenous? And how can we realistically address this?

One approach may be to kill our experts: Those of you interested in collective intelligence tools and methodologies may want to read this: http://goo.gl/8Lo6H5.

Another is the approach @Bezdomny is testing with the Making Space project.

Learn more about Using the Future in the project group.

Photo by @elviapw published on Dazed Digital

Thanks for the mail.

How are things? When will anyone of you be in Lisbon, so we could meet up?

Hugs, Thomas

Thomas Behrens
Visual Communication
+351 93 456 6040