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We combine systematic foresight, Science and Technology Studies (STS), and ethnographic research to discover iterative solutions to real-world problems.
We believe that good social science research can help change the world.

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Social Dimensions of Technology

Changes in technology are often at the core of transition processes and can have an important impact on the environment and people. Social dimensions of technology - how technologies are shaped, developed, used or contested remain less understood. 

 

How do we ensure that socio-technical innovation - from new devices to new social arrangements are inclusive and sustainable? 

 

We understand User Sociology through Ethnographies and pilot innovation in Living Labs to understand the design, development and governance of emerging technologies.

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Imaginaries

Collective, dominant and institutionalized visions of the future are implicated in the way transition pathways are imagined. These imaginaries shape development narratives, policies, institutions, social choices and behavior. 

 

How do we ensure that visions of both less and more powerful actors shape the transitions ?

We use Foresight Groups - trend analysis, imagination workshops and scenario exercises to understand plural imaginaries, unpack underlying values and assumptions and identify pathways to sustainable futures.

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Human Choice and Behaviour

Choices made by individuals, households, communities specific to local contexts are critical for diffusion of sustainable lifestyles, technologies and practices. Behavioral insights need to inform policies and plans to ensure adoption of sustainable solutions by end users.

 

How can we inspire, mobilise and mainstream people’s participation in transition pathways? 

 

We undertake Ethnographies to understand user practices and community decision-making to inform policies and design choice architecture for sustainable behaviour. 

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Anticipatory Governance & Policy

Predictive approaches to governance and policy making are ineffective in face of uncertainty and contradictory certitudes of social groups. Public debate and deliberation and reflexive approaches that expand scope of decision frames and anticipate alternate futures are needed.

 

How do we govern transition processes when the very contours of the pathways remain uncertain and largely even unknown? 

 

We conduct Policy Labs and Monsoon Academy  to understand plural perspectives, find iterative solutions and generate policy recommendations.