Futurist and Designer
Freie Universität Berlin

Presentation | A Model for Design and Futures Studies

Stefanie Ollenburg, lives in Berlin, Germany. She works as a consulting futurist and a communication designer, aiming to translate innovative ideas into real life projects. She also lectures at the Humboldt University in Berlin and the FH Münster on design and future studies. After Stefanie received her B.F.A. (Bachelor of Fine Arts) in advertising design from the Academy of Art University, San Francisco, CA (USA) she worked as an art and creative director for international agencies in New York, Vienna and Berlin. But her aspiration to support sustainability projects drove Stefanie to go back to school. She studied at the Freie University in Berlin and received her M.A. in Futures Studies. Currently Stefanie also works pro-bono in the project: “D2030 – a map for the future” (d2030.de). It is an open-source scenario process to show the risks and possibilities for Germany until the year 2030. Its objective is to nationally establish an active dialog about these future scenarios. Stefanie’s goal is to generate an understanding of futures thinking within groups and organizations, because: We need to keep in mind that today’s decisions affect how the future will become. And different plots i.e. actions will create different narratives of the futures.

This presentation proposes a model for a process that recognises that transformation needs both futures studies ánd design: a mindset that is open for alternatives and different viewpoints and ideas to create something tangible to result in projects that are visionary yet reachable.