A few months ago I was contacted by Giorgos Georgopoulos from the Futurescaper team about the Pax Pacifica research proposal.
Futurescaper is a crowd based peer to peer foresight platform, a significant social and technical innovation and advance in the futures studies field. In its own words:
Futurescaper builds upon decades of research about how people see the the world (through metaphor, mental models, frames, and cognitive biases) and about how decisions are made (through trade-offs, group bargaining, and communities of influence). We start with stakeholders’ awareness and perspectives, then use advanced visualisation techniques to represents them as collective mental models. This reveals a picture of the complex cause and effect behind difficult issues, helping you converge on the most important areas of uncertainty and influence.
Giorgos and I found a time in our busy schedules to skype and discuss the possibility of using futurescaper as the platform for the Pax Pacifica project. Significantly, he offered futurescaper to the project pro bono, explaining that the futurescaper team was keen to find public science applications for the system.
For me it was just an amazing gust of wind in the sails. And much much appreciated – thank you Giorgos, Noah Raford and the team.
So this brings the project from the Anticipate phase into the Design phase. Basically, with a commitment to use the futurescaper system, this contours the design conversation, and limits the platform to this system. It initiates a specific design conversation around how to run the Pax Pacifica project through futurescaper.
I have spoken to FuturesLab member and Tamkang University Professor Jeanne Hoffman about being involved, as she has a PhD in China Futures, and she is keen to be involved in some capacity.
There are of course other missing pieces. Funds need to be found for this project, especially to fund a team leader and others on a project basis. And a team needs to coalesce that can put together the design, project management, and implementation + evaluation. Those with any ideas about where we might get funds for this (peace research philanthropy? etc.) please let us know. And if you want to be involved, also contact us.
For now just very happy to announce we have taken a big step on the back of the generosity of the futurescaper team. And now hoping this can be turned into a significant citizen science / cosmopolitan governance undertaking.
I can find few things more important that articulating a third space of visions for the pax pacifica that can transcend the mutually exclusive nationalist narratives of the US-China (which express muscle flexing and power projection) and develop a vision of deep coexistence and cultural synergy.