A good university is well prepared for the future. Thinking about the future asks for creative imagination. Stories about the future in which science and technology play an important role can provide the necessary means. Large companies like Google, Siemens and Intel use narrative methods to explore future scenarios. The story about the Mars One Mission already shows how inspiring a story can be and how much synergy it can create between disciplines. The goal is to produce a book with inspiring stories about the impact of science and technology on society, organizations, and individuals in about 25 years.
We propose to organize six monthly workshops Science Fiction Stories in the Design Lab. We bring together students and lecturers from different faculties to create synergy between disciplines. To gain societal impact, we will also invite stakeholders who are professionals in the field like UT alumni. The technologies explored will focus on the university themes like nanotechnology, biomedical technology, robot technology, smart cities, and academic education.
Each workshop will stimulate the writing process by combining a state-of-the-art overview of a technological field from the technological faculties with insights on the functioning of societies, organizations, and individuals from the BMS faculty. Creative writing assignments will be used that stimulate the imaginative process. These include for example differences in genre (comedy, tragedy, quest, fairy tale) and perspective (auctorial narrator, I-perspective, perspective from the technology). During the workshop participants work alone or together on a story, which they finish at home. The workshops will be organized by the Story lab of the IGS Institute that brings expertise in creative writing and future imagination to the workshops.
The initiators will supervise Psychology students who analyze and write their thesis on the stories. The initiators use these analyses to write an introduction to the book.