FOOD FUTURING TOURS - A participatory visionary lab to think and tinker with the future of food

28 September, 2015


Coordinator: Alba L’Astorina (IREA)
Coordinator: Ângela Guimarães Pereira (Joint Research Centre)


Food Futuring Tours is a participatory experience which aims at re-imagining food in the XXI century, collecting ideas, visions and imaginaries about the future of food and food of the future, its possible social, ethical, cultural and environmental impacts, starting from the visual experience of some participants to EXPO 2015, where for six months hundreds of countries around the world will showcase technologies, innovation, culture, traditions, around the theme of food. Through this exercise organizers wish to collect into a reflexive debate the insights from citizens who usually are described and performed as just consumers – i.e. following a neo-liberal economic perspective focusing on citizen choices and behaviors as drivers of food markets. Therefore, the ultimate aim of this exercise is to explore other ways in which human agency can change what is now described as an urgent and complex human issue: feeding the planet with quality.  

Food Futuring Tours is an idea of Alba L’Astorina a researcher of CNR and Ângela Guimarães Pereira from JRC. It takes stock of research and literature on public engagement in debates about science and technology that are relevant for public policy; in particular this experience is designed according to what is designated as "experiential engagement". The Food Futuring Tours is an activity of public engagement based on an “experiential” mode of engaging, noticing and anticipating the future first explored By Cynthia Selin, Sarah Davies, Gretchen Gano and Ângela Guimarães Pereira in Lisbon through a project called Finding Futures (Selin et al. 2013).

This project explored innovative ways of deliberating the future of cities through an emphasis on embodied spatio-visual engagement with urban landscapes. The project has since evolved in other directions, namely The Futurescape City Tours (see http://www.cynthiaselin.com/futurescape-city-tours.html) and it has been mainly centred on cities. In this context the mode will be explored on the topic of food. The workshop will also use participative methodologies for introducing the debate on science and technology widely explored by organizators. 5 different tours (30 May, 21 June, 29 June, 10 September and 28 September) are envisaged during the Expo 2015 event. Each tour develops during a full day for a total of 6 hours. The final event consisting of the presentation of the results of the experience, with a public discussion guided by food experts shall be held at the Auditorium of the EU Pavilion in October. Only 20 places are available for each tour. In order to attend a tour, you need to register on the website foodfuturingtours.irea.cnr.it and you will be notified by email about your enrolment.

More information on the official website of the Food Futuring Tours: foodfuturingtours.irea.cnr.it/