How can we harness the creative powers of humanity to better understand and address the very serious threats we collectively confront? We will first dive into unconventional, serious-but-fun activities to prime the pump our analytical and creative brainpower, and establish new connections between the diverse range of participants on site and online. Then we will share our experiences of recent initiatives that blend science, art, and innovation to engage with complex catastrophic and existential risks, from DataSculptures to illustrate the past loss of national population to war, to the cultural resonance of movies like “Don’t Look Up” and “Dr. Strangelove”. We will explore and enjoy the elegant emotional and cognitive intensity that games bring, and how we can experience them alongside system dynamic models of global threats to society… all this to help people and organisations experience the complexity of future risks and the tough decisions they throw up – with playful experiences successfully deployed from rural Zambia to the White House and from the Vatican to NASA.
In collaboration with professional humourists, game designers, aerial acrobats, thermochromic artists, museum curators and other talented creators joining this session, we will jointly brainstorm concrete options for researchers, humanitarian workers, artists and designers working with governments, donors, the media, communities at risk and other stakeholders to confront evolving hazards and vulnerabilities - mobilising both the intellect and the emotions of decision makers at all scales. This workshop is part of a broader, long-term initiative aimed at developing well-connected networks of experts, authorities and practitioners with off-theshelf preparedness and response plans and communication materials for catastrophic risks.