Updated guidelines for contributors

The conference programme included more than 40 items by 65 contributors. Abstracts of all DDT contributions will appear in the printed illustrated conference proceedings. A hybrid between exhibition catalogue and conference proceedings, it will feature all the artists and futurists taking part in A Temporary Futures Institute as well as DDT contributors. It will be made up of essays, papers, reports, short stories, images, scripts and other unique contributions.

In addition, a special issue of the Journal of Futures Studies (JFS) will feature a selection of peer-reviewed articles, illustrated narratives and a ‘digital exhibit’.

Extended deadline: finalised contributions for the proceedings as well as JFS are due by September 30th.

JFS expects articles, essay and reports to show an in-depth understanding of future studies’ dimensions, content, research perspectives and methods.

To stimulate the systematic use and growth of futures literature, one of the criteria for publishing in the journal is indicating how the article relates to others in the futures literature. That is, your paper should refer to material published in this journal and in the other journals in the futures field (including, the Journal of Futures Studies, Futures, Foresight, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, The European Journal of Futures Research, World Future Review, On the Horizon) as well as futures material contained in books, monographs, other field related journals, including visual resources and web resources. Editors strongly advise authors cite at least two or more works in the futures field.

Essays for either JFS or the proceedings| 2000-4000 words in length (including references). Essays are expected to provide original viewpoints and visions, expressed through strong and intelligent prose.

Articles for JFS |  4000-8000 words in length (including references). Articles are expected to make novel contributions to the futures studies field, build on the corpus of futures literature, be evidentially strong and develop clear themes and arguments. Articles are double-blind peer reviewed.

Papers for proceedings | 3000-5000 words in length (including references). Papers are expected to provide a unique contribution to the state-of-te-art on designing and developing futures for transformation. They need to develop a clear argument and a self-aware perspective. Papers a read by DDT reading committee members and edited with the authors.

Shorts for proceedings | 700-1800 words in length (including references). These short narratives provide a unique perspective on applied futures from your DDT presentation. They highlight cases, experiences or ideas in a direct manner. They can be first-person accounts or stories from the futures as well as short reflections or opinion pieces.

Unique contributions for proceedings | Make a proposal we can’t refuse based on your contribution to DDT.

Please send your contributions to and don’t hesitate to contact us about the work you are doing if you would like to discuss.

Formatting instructions for JFS.

  • Manuscripts should be double-spaced
  • The cover page should include the title of the manuscript, the name(s) and surname(s) of the authors and the author’s affiliations, e-mail, correspondence and a suggested running head.
  • A footnote on this page should contain acknowledgments and information on grants.
  • The next page should contain an abstract of no more than 100 words and keywords of the article.
  • The following pages of text should be numbered consecutively.
  • More details on the preparation of manuscripts (including referencing) for JFS.

A brief foreword and/or an epilogue is not required, but may be included.

The Journal of Futures Studies encourages authors to use an accessible, clear, plain English style. Our aim is to make the Journal of Futures Studies a readable, lively source of the best of futures thinking and methodologies.

More details on preparing your manuscript for JFS.

The authors of papers published in JFS are entitled to 1 copy of the printed issue in which their articles appear and all DDT contributors receive a printed copy of the proceedings.

A Temporary Futures Institute

In the spring and summer of 2017, M HKA will host an exhibition that intends to be ‘more than an exhibition’. ‘A Temporary Futures Institute’ will attempt to turn the museum into a laboratory or studio, and to bring together two contexts that have certain things in common: art and futures studies (also known as foresight).

The initial impulse of the co-organisers, M HKA’s senior curator Anders Kreuger and Antwerp-based professional futurist Maya Van Leemput, was to compare their two speculative domains. Perhaps they are disciplines, perhaps not. How do art and futures studies relate to knowledge? In art, the concept and practice of knowing is always contested: sometimes under-rated, sometimes over-rated, often in conflict with thinking and feeling. In futures studies, the desired object of knowledge – the various futures that might be – is per definition always absent, because it doesn’t yet exist.

Since we want to challenge the museum presentation format, we thought it would be useful to invite both artists and professional futurists (with specialisations in Alternative Futures, Design Futures, Postnormal Futures and Technology Futures) to contribute to and participate in a common project for a few months. Therefore the title: ‘A Temporary Futures Institute’.

From a curatorial perspective it is interesting to work with futures as an exhibition theme and to consider the futures of exhibition-making itself. From a futurist perspective this is a valuable opportunity to see how artists can create and communicate images of futures and help question the meanings and methods of futures studies.

As a structuring device for the exhibition, we decided to use an approach originating at the Manoa School of Futures Studies at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu where professor em.  James Dator developed an analytical and scenario modelling tool that he calls ‘four futures’.

All contributors in ‘A Temporary Futures Institute’ are asked to address either continuation (or continued growth), collapse (in itself but also as a possible beginning of something new), discipline (whether top-down, as in authoritarian societies, or bottom-up, as in activist movements) and transformation (with special attention to possible future roles of Artificial Intelligence).

The intention is to ensure that each futures scenario is addressed by at least one artist and one non-artist, and to organise the exhibition as discrete units, enveloped by a purpose-built set commissioned from the artist Alexander Lee (1974, French Polynesia).

The other invited artists are: Nina Roos (1956,Finland) and Darius Žiūra (1968, Lithuania) for ‘continuation’; Michel Auder (1944, France/US),  Simryn Gill (1959, Malaysia/Australia)  for ‘collapse’; Miriam Bäckström (1967, Sweden) and Kasper Bosmans (1990, Belgium) for ‘discipline’; Guan Xiao (1983, China) and Jean Katambayi (1974, Democratic Republic of the Congo) for ‘transformation’.

Maya Van Leemput (1969, Belgium) is also contributing to the exhibition, for ‘continuation’. The professional futurists invited are: Mei-Mei Song (1966 Taiwan) for ‘collapse’; Centre for Postnormal Policy and Futures Studies (London/Chicago), consisting of Ziauddin Sardar (1951, Pakistan/UK) and John Sweeney (1977, US) for ‘discipline’; Stuart Candy (1980, Australia/Canada) for ‘transformation’.

The museum’s mediation team has been involved from the beginning in devising the content and form of the project. Our aim is to attract audiences that are different (and hopefully broader) than M HKA’s usual followers. We are hoping to involve a variety of groups and organisations in creating activities inside and during the exhibition, encouraging visitors to come more than once.

The DDT unconference will be held on Friday June 16th and Saturday June 17th inside the exhibition.

‘A Temporary Futures Institute’ will open at the end of April 2017 and run until the end of September. The project is part of the series ‘The Uses of Art’, funded by the European Union through the LInternationale museum confederacy, of which M HKA is a founding member. Other members of the confederacy include MACBA in Barcelona, Moderna Galerija in Ljubljana, Reina Sofía in Madrid, SALT in Istanbul and Ankara and the Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven.

Summer of Futures

The European  Summer of Futures connects several futures oriented activities in the summer of 2017 in Europe. For the duration of the ‘A Temporary Futures Institute’ exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Antwerp (from April till September 2017) a team of volunteers and students provide an information, communication and services hub.

The string of futures conferences taking place in Europe in June 2017 provides the backbone of a joined calendar. It begins with the World Futures Studies Federation’s Humankind  2050 June 7–9 in Jondal (Norway) to celebrate 50 years since Mankind 2000 in Oslo of 1967 that lead a.o. to the founding of the WFSF. Next there is the Finland Futures Research Centre’s Futures of a Complex World’June 12–13 in Turku (Finland), celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the FFRC. Then follows ‘Design, Develop, Transform’ in Antwerp and Brussels (Belgium), June 15–17 organised by the knowledge centre Applied Futures Research-Open Time and the Museum of Contemporary Art of Antwerp.

A blog with reports and critical reflection on various Summer of Futures activities will start here soon. For the calendar of dedicated futures events that our volunteers update, refer to the ‘upcoming events’ listing below on this page.

For the conference period and until mid September the SoF team also offers travel and lodging advice. In particular, we assist participants from the global South on their stay in Europe and have volunteer hosts at key locations.

Do you want to participate? Do you want to be a host ? Do you have a futures oriented activity on between May and October 2017? Contact the SoF coordinator Maya Van Leemput via

Open Time

The centre of expertise Applied Futures Research – Open Time of the Management, Media and Society department of the Erasmus University College Brussels coordinates the collaboration on DDT. The (un-)conference is the public closing event of our first PWO research cycle (2015–2017).

This cycle is aimed at building and sharing expertise on futures orientations in practice and assessing existing overviews and categorisations of futures theory and research, methods and techniques. Together with organisations from civil society, culture, local authorities and social movements, we apply selected ideas and methods in four case studies. Our goal is to make futures more accessible to a network of students, lectors, practitioners and professionals from the fields of practice of our study programmes. We seek to connect these local actors with an international network of academic and professional futures thinkers and researchers.

Futures theory and research exist in many flavours and are applied in widely varying contexts. In this heterogenous landscape Open Time develops knowledge and insight for applied futures research.

An increasing number of actors in society (public authorities, companies, civic organisations and other groups) is involved in different forms of futures oriented work. National and international think tanks, research centres and institutes, research teams, consultants and individual researchers conduct more or less systematic futures research, applying multiple perspectives and approaches.

Open Time records this evolution and participates in it with its own applied futures research projects. With DDT we want to bring together and share more of the rich variety of futures orientations. In particular we want to learn about co-creative, artistic and transformative futures approaches in the global North and South in profit, non-profit and policy settings.

At DDT our researchers will present their project results, including an online game developed for case study partner Greenpeace.

Medina Abdelkader

Human Factors Strategist

Presentation | Organisational Foresight

At the intersection of operations strategy and long-term planning, Medina is a human factors strategist working with teams undergoing transition. With a focus on social neuroscience, uncertainty, diversity, and bias, she works with teams to design organizational strategy that considers some of the cognitive limitations we have in enacting lasting change, and how we navigate through those limitations. She’s an avid rower, endlessly curious, and a fierce advocate of feminism in the corporate world. 

Strategic foresight and organizational culture and neuroscience. This presentation argues that the brain’s temporal way finding networks play a significant role in strategic myopia, and that there are several neurological interventions that organizations need to consider to nurture future-facing culture.

Shakil Ahmed

Associate Director of Alumni Impact
Teach for Bangladesh

Presentation | How do you create an educational movement?

Shakil Ahmed is currently Associate Director of Alumni Impact at Teach for Bangladesh. Energized by his passion for education, futures and story-telling, he emphasizes the importance of creating, sharing and teaching stories of positive, alternative futures as key to paving long-term impact in shaping a brighter future. He has been conducting workshops and giving talks on diverse fields of interest ranging from understanding education, educational futures, foresight planning, analytical thinking, experiential learning, Socratic questioning, mindfulness in schools, storytelling, educational technology, design of learning spaces, etc. He has a Masters in Educational Planning, Leadership and Management from BRAC University and a Bachelors of Science in Theoretical Physics from National University of Singapore. He has previously worked in LogicMills (Singapore), the BRAC Institute of Educational Development and Dhaka Tribune. Outside work, he explores storytelling media such as theater, performance poetry, comedy, workshops and creative writing.

Miriam Bäckström


Exhibition | ‘A Temporary Futures Institute’

Born in Stockholm, Sweden, in 1967. Lives in Stockholm. Numerous solo exhibitions, notably at the Museum for Contemporary Art Basel in 2004, at Lunds konsthall, Sweden, in 2012 and at Extra City in Antwerp in 2014. Numerous group exhibitions, including the 48th Venice Biennale in 1999. Represented Sweden at the 51st Venice Biennale in 2005. Visiting Professor at the Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm in 2009-2012.

Jacques Barcia

Dream Machine Futures Studio; Porto Digital

Paper | SF as a tool in futures
Case study | Porto Digital’s Mind the future, Brasil

Jacques Barcia is a futurist, speculative fiction writer and award-winning journalist from Recife, Brazil. He’s one of the crazy minds behind Dream Machine Futures Studio,  a consultancy that blends foresight, design and science fiction to disrupt the future. He is also responsible for the Mind the Future program at Brazilian non-profit tech park Porto Digital. His stories were published in the US, UK, Romania and Brazil. Jacques holds a bachelor degree in Journalism and is a MA candidate in Design. He’s also a visiting teacher at Faculdade Cesar.

This paper will discuss how cognitive estrangement, as well as sublime and grotesque SF narratives play a fundamental role in turning plain information about the future into meaning, pathos and, ultimately, a call to action and transformation.

The mission of Mind the Future, the technology observation and futures research program of Brazilian science and technology park Porto Digital, is to help companies become more futures-proof and help startups disrupt.

Peter Bishop

Founder and Executive Director
Teach the Future

Presentation | The Futures Playbook

Dr. Bishop is the Founder and Executive Director of Teach the Future, an organization whose mission is to encourage and support educators who want to include futures thinking in their classes and schools at all levels.  In 2013, Dr. Bishop retired as an Associate Professor of Strategic Foresight and Director of the graduate program in Foresight at the University of Houston. He has published two books on Strategic Foresight: Thinking about the Future: Guidelines for Strategic Foresight (2007) and Teaching about the Future: The Basics of Foresight Education (2012), both with co-author Andy Hines. He delivers keynote addresses and conducts seminars on the future for business, government and not-for-profit organizations.  He also facilitates groups in developing scenarios, visions and strategic plans for the future.  Dr. Bishop’s clients include IBM, the NASA Johnson Space Center, Nestle USA, Tetra Pak, the Shell Pipeline Corporation, the Defense and Central Intelligence Agencies, the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the Texas Department of Transportation, the California Environmental Protection Agency, and the Center for Houston’s Future.  Dr. Bishop is a founding Board member of the Association of Professional Futurists and President of his own firm, Strategic Foresight and Development, which offers training and facilitation to businesses and government agencies. Dr. Bishop came to the University of Houston in 2005, having taught futures studies at the Clear Lake campus since 1982.  Dr. Bishop started teaching at Georgia Southern College in 1973 where he specialized in social problems and political sociology.  He received his doctoral degree in sociology from Michigan State University in 1974.  Dr. Bishop received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from St. Louis University where he also studied mathematics and physics.  He grew up in St. Louis, Missouri where he was a member of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) for seven years.  Dr. Bishop is married with two children and two grandchildren.

Jessica Bland

Head of Research and Foresight
Dubai Future Foundation

Panel & fish bowl | Can a compelling narrative about the future also be the nexus for public debate?
Discussion | Hard or soft hybridity

Jessica is Head of Research and Foresight at the Dubai Future Foundation. She previously set-up and then led the technology futures research team at Nesta, the UK’s innovation foundation. Jessica began her career writing about science and technology for the Economist newspaper and then as a Senior Policy Adviser at the Royal Society, the UK’s National Academy of Science. She is interested in creative mechanisms to enable the responsible development of disruptive technology.