Websites & Organisations

  1. Games For Change – The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (a specialised agency of the United Nations system more commonly abbreviate to UNESCO through the Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development (MGIEP) organises a challenge that asks game developers to submit an original game design incorporating ‘what if’ questions that relate to peace and sustainability themes, including alternative energy, climate change, culture, social issues, gender, consumerism, the impact of corporations, education and global citizenship. This is relevant to this site because a) its about innovating change and b) good games need good narratives. For more details, see the Games for Change Website.
  2. The 21st Century Robot – This is a maker project based around around a modularised humanoid robot kit which allows non-technical people to become involved in the design of future domestic robots (if you click the ‘maker’ link, only read the introduction, the rest is about science fiction prototyping).  The project has multiple aims ranging from motivation children to study STEM topics through to exploring and democratizing the design of domestic robots  with a wide section of society. More information is available on the project website.
  3. ScientixScientix promotes and supports a Europe-wide collaboration among STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) teachers, education researchers, policymakers and other STEM education professionals. In its first stage (2009-2012), the project built an online portal to collect and present European STEM education projects and their results, and organised several teacher workshops. The goal of the second phase (2013-2015) is to expand to the national level.
  4. Technovelgy.com – This is a very useful website created by Bill Christensen that allows you to find ‘inventions’ that have been described in science fiction novels. Thus you could, for example, find a list of inventions from a particular authors SciFi book, or see inventions listed as a timeline. This is a lovingly crafted website which is very useful to people searching for ideas for SF-prototypes.
  5. Centre for Science and Imagination – Arizona State University’s Centre for Science and Imagination facilitates productive collaboration between the humanities and the sciences to bring human narratives to scientific questions, and explore the full social implications of cutting-edge research. It is composed of writers, artists, scientists and engineers that collaboratively explore grand ambitions for innovation and discovery.
  6. Imperial Tech Foresight – The Tech Foresight unit at Imperial College specialises in long-range forecasts and trend research. Their web page neatly provides information drawn from a number of sources including what they call Smarties (an army of their own students providing crowd-sourced research) and a set of short videos of their academics describing a number of future visions. A particularly useful download from their website is the Timeline of Emerging Science and Technology (created by Richard Watson & Alex Ayad) which explores the potential for five science fields (biotech; nanotech; neurotech; digitech and greentech) to produce future disruptive innovations.
  7. CMU Design Fiction and Imaginary Futures Course – This is a very interesting course (and supporting blog) that is closely related to Science Fiction prototyping (Brian David Johnson, has given talks on this course, there are also occasional posts about Science Fiction Prototyping. They have a very useful resource page and a blog.
  8. The MIT Design Fiction Group – The Design Fiction Group in MIT’s School of  Architecture and Planning aims to promote discussion about the social, cultural, and ethical implications of new technologies through design and storytelling.
  9. Manchester Innovation, Management and Policy Division – The Manchester Business School’s  Innovation Management and Policy (IMP) division is  a leading centre for the study of technological innovation, social change and innovation policy analysis, specialising on the challenges facing firms and public services to apply innovation to their areas of work.
  10. The World Future Society – The World Future Society aims to enable thinkers, political personalities, scientists and lay-people to share an informed, serious dialogue on what the future will be like. They do that in two ways, first through organising events and second via through publications, most notably THE FUTURIST magazine.
  11. The University of Sussex Creative Science Centre – The University of Sussex’s Creative Science Centre (CSC) provides support to primary and secondary schools teaching science. It was started in the 1990’s by Jonathan Hare and adopts a creative approach to learning by encouraging students to make things (very much in vogue now with the rise of the maker movement (if you click the link, only read the introduction, the rest is about science fiction prototyping). In support of its aims the CSC offers a range of workshops, projects and creative activities to schools.. The website is packed with interesting and highly educational projects such as one that simply, but powerfully, demonstrates the energy in mobile phone emf transmissions or, on a different level, presents poems about science. If you are a science teacher, or just someone interested in learning about science, this is a brilliant resource!
  12. Cognition and Neuro-ethics in Science FictionThis conference (hosted by the Insight Institute of Neurosurgery and Neuroscience and the University of Michigan-Flint Philosophy Department) explores the ways in which cognition and neuro-ethics are deployed in SciFi narrative. It takes the perspective that if science was unrestrained by time, space, and technology, the failings and ideals of humanity can be better understood enabling neuro-ethical decisions to be examined. For examples questions such as, what is the ideal expression involving the brain or brain-like systems or what is the role of reason, reasons, reasoning, and rationality can be explored.
  13. Oxford Futures Forum – The Oxford Futures Forum is  a group of “futures” practitioners and researchers that run a bi-annual event aimed at bringing together people who interested in scenario thinking and planning for the next 30 years. The main purpose is to clarify the theory of what works, when and why, in order to extend the effectiveness of scenario thinking and practice.
  14.  LabLit.comLabLit.com is a website intended for non-scientists as well as scientists. As the name suggests it aims at establishing a synergistic relationship between science laboratory work and literature. As one might expect from this combination, science-fiction features strongly in this mix but with an emphasis on essays containing realistic science which sheds light on science in popular culture.
  15. TheatrescienceTheatrescience use an entertainment theatre setting to engage new audiences with scientific thinking and bring informed scientific debate into theatrical spaces, as well as encouraging scientists to develop their skills in communicating with those outside their own fields.  Post-show discussions enable audiences to question both scientists and theatre practitioners with the aim to inspire audiences to start exploring science for themselves or encourage scientists to reflect upon their own work.
  16. Comma PressComa Press are a publishing house in Manchester, UK that is dedicated to the short story and has published some books that explore the relationship between the short story – as a vehicle for hypothesis, experiment and argument – and scientific thinking.
  17. British Science Association – The BSA seeks to advance the public understanding, accessibility and accountability of the sciences and engineering in the UK.
  18. Cafe ScientifiqueCafe Scientifique is a forum for the discussion of current work and interesting scientific issues and is open to anyone. The meetings are held in informal and accessible venues such as cafes, bars, and restaurants.
  19. The Singularity University – The Singularity University leverages the convergence of exponential technologies will set the world on the path to solve our Global Grand Challenges and shift from an era of scarcity to abundance.
  20. The Museum of Science Fiction – According to their website, The Museum of Science Fiction is the world’s first comprehensive science fiction museum, covering the history of the genre across the arts and describing its relationship to the real world. They intend to house an array of objects and experiences that share the history of science fiction. It’s also committed to providing an educational experience using science fiction as a tool to inspire interest in science, engineering, technology, math, art, history, philosophy and, of course, literature. For example it might help visitors understand how warp-drives might function or how cyborgs could affect people’s daily lives. Developing the museum is an ongoing project from the virtual to the real.