The Fulton Grand Challenge Scholars Program is an affiliate of the National Academy of Engineering’s prestigious program; it combines innovative curriculum with co-curricular experiences that create an intellectual fusion which spans academic disciplines and includes entrepreneurial, global and service learning opportunities. CSI collaborates with the Grand Challenge Scholars program to develop STEM learning modules that use science fiction as a tool for prototyping the future and exploring the social and cultural implications of scientific and technological breakthroughs.
We are collaborating with the Tempe Center for the Arts on its American POP! Comic Books to Science Fiction exhibit (open January 17 – May 31, 2014), contributing a series of video interviews with scholars from the humanities, arts, social sciences, natural sciences and engineering that will be available to view in the exhibit. These interviews will highlight the importance of popular culture and science fiction in motivating scholars to study science and technology, and the importance of fiction, creativity and storytelling as tools for thinking constructively about the future.
How will people read in the future? What will books look and feel like? How will publishers adjust in the face of technological upheaval? In what new ways will authors engage with their readers? CSI is collaborating with Intel® Labs on a number of creative interventions and research projects to explore the future of books, reading, writing and publishing.
Hieroglyph, a collaboration with Neal Stephenson, teams up authors with scientists, engineers and other researchers to write science fiction stories that envision a near future radically changed by technological innovation. The project aims to break out of the gloomy, dystopian rut that dominates so many of our visions of the future by inspiring people to think critically and creatively about science, technology and society. CSI hosts an online platform that enables quick, easy collaboration between writers and researchers and invites broad public participation. Hieroglyph is currently assembling an anthology of fiction and non-fiction under contract with HarperCollins.
Emerge is an annual event that brings engineers, scientists, artists, storytellers and designers together to build, draw, write and rethink the future of the human species and the environments we share. In spring 2014 Emerge will present a “Carnival of the Future,” immersing participants in unexpected, thought-provoking, challenging and beautiful visions of the future.
The Tomorrow Project ignites creative, productive, science-based conversations about the future. Intel and CSI are collaborating to publish a series of anthologies featuring original content written by K-12 and college students and others, with CSI coordinating an editorial board of leading researchers, journalists, scholars and ASU students. Each anthology will focus on a different set of grand challenges and possible solutions. Our current project, The Future – Powered by Fiction, will feature short stories, essays, short films and graphic novels created by young people worldwide.
Future Tense is a partnership between ASU, the New America Foundation and Slate magazine to explore emerging technologies and their transformative effects on society and public policy. Future Tense hosts events and public conversations, and publishes original content from policymakers, scientists, humanists and journalists, including many ASU scholars, on Slate.
CSI and Arizona State University share Solve for X’s commitment to ambitious, solutions-focused moonshot thinking. Moonshots live in the gray area between audacious projects and pure science fiction; instead of mere 10% gains, they aim for 10x improvements. The combination of a huge problem, a radical solution and the breakthrough technology that might just make that solution possible is the essence of a moonshot. Great moonshot discussions require an innovative mindset–including a healthy disregard for the impossible–while still maintaining a level of practicality.
The Imagination Project is an ASU student organization that fosters imaginative and interdisciplinary thinking about the future by building prototypes, hosting conversations, conducting research and creating art. The group organizes events, campaigns and projects focused on catalyzing discussion, debate and action about ideas that will transform the future of humankind for the better.
To join The Imagination Project, visit their Facebook page or email imagination.asu AT gmail DOT com.
Quanta, an initiative of ASU’s Ofice of Knowledge Enterprise Development, is a revolutionary way to harness technology to inspire students about science. By using the Internet to connect high school students with college students and scientists, Quanta intends to give every student the chance to participate in real-world, computer-based science experiments and to have the nation’s top students and researchers mentor them in their own projects for school and science fairs.
Project Humanities seeks to reveal the interactions among the humanities and other areas of scholarship and human endeavor, and to explore the ways that people connect with one another and make meaning from their shared experiences. These ambitious goals are closely aligned with the Center for Science and the Imagination’s mission to encourage productive collaborations among humanists, artists and scientists. Our growing relationship with Project Humanities includes the Science Fiction TV Dinner Series, as well as several other projects currently in development.
We are partnering with ASU’s Center for Games and Impact to develop interactive game platforms that encourage users to leverage academic knowledge to model and solve real-world problems. Additionally, we are engaged in the Fab Lab project, designing a game to inspire possible use scenarios and then scaffold players in actually designing real-world products using fab labs and 3D printing technology. The core of this effort is to bring dedicated scientists, community activists, learning scientists, and game designers together create a sense of public agency and engagement around STEM challenges.
Science Fiction TV Dinners are a space for fun, inclusive, interdisciplinary conversations about how some of our favorite science fiction TV shows imagine the future. At these events participants share a meal, watch an episode of a classic or contemporary show, listen to a conversation among scientists, artists, humanists, engineers, science fiction authors and other experts, and take part in a communal discussion about how science fiction and storytelling shape the way we think about science, technology, society and culture. Previous events have featured shows like Star Trek: The Original Series, The Jetsons, Doctor Who and The Twilight Zone.
Under Tomorrow’s Sky brings together an ensemble of scientists, technologists, futurists and designers to collectively author a proposal for a future city – an imaginary urbanism, the landscapes that surround it and the stories it contains. The Center for Science and the Imagination aims to participate in the Future Cities design think tank, developing narratives and scenarios that speculate on how urban systems in the future might feel or function, what their social and cultural fabric might be, and what forms they might take. The model for the future city will generate public exhibitions, publications, and a variety of other narrative media projects exploring the implications and consequences of emerging urban conditions.