notes from scenario planning workshop at foam 20120530-31

(as part of resilients and future_preparedness. workshop notes. )

present: amo,david,rasa,michka,maja,nik

20120530 (Day 1)


  • Food prints project : how to feed future cities > today, working on Molenbeek.
  • Quite a few scenario building toolkits.
  • Foodprints > ruler > five different scenarios
  • Create as symphony of scenarios using the toolkits.
  • 11 steps process.
  • Working with Stockholm resilience models.


  • Scenarios are about being aware > quicker than actually connecting people and doing the real stuff.


  • Photography, design, public policy, food, drugs, and complex systems.
  • Discovering life in countryside in a cabin.


  • Design forecasting background > prepare designers to help them act for social changes.
  • Resilience can be conservative, scenarios bring visionary aspects and fight the apathy.


  • similar motivation as Maja, happy to discover new toolkits.

Step 1 : Identify your focal challenge/problem

  • Set a question/challenge

You may have a whole set. Tool 1 : Drivers of change cards based on food Questions based on social, env, eco, poli… Identify the first question through this tool.

Critical uncertainties.
Four scenarios.
Decide which matrix we will use.
Speculate on what exist, because today we have no experts.
Identify the people that would be needed.

Map > get the possibilities.
Network of people, and connect through those channels.
Role of food in the community.
Physical stuff
	What we observe

1) Challenge : division between women and men related to food.
	Women > buy/grow and eat inside. Not accpetable to eat out.
	Men > eat out.
	They are happy when you do it, but they do not find it acceptable for their wives.
	Exception : street food.
		Market once a week
		Flee market once a year
	> How can street food become more diverse in Molenbeek ?
	> How can food as a daily routine become an instrument in making eating an all-inclusive experience ?
	Paradigm shift induced all year long.
	Farming, distribution, trade, diet > shifts in mindset.
		From Hungry City's book.
	Parameters : gender, age, culture.
	Molenbeek biggest surface area and youth population (60% of Molenbeek is youth, Molenbeek is 1/19 of Brussels region population).
	People live in appartments.
	Divided in neighborhoods.
	High unemployment.
	People are squeezed between  gentrification and Flanders !
	Seen as a ghetto, and the most criminal area - even if it may not be the worst.
2) Challenge : perception of Molenbeek
	> How could food improve the image of Molenbeek ?
		Positive, food diversity, shops open all the time.
3) Challenge : ramadan.
	Before sunset : hungry > aggressive.
	After sunset : sugar rush > fights.
	Daytime with sandwich > you can attack people.
	> How do you increase religious tolerance using food ?
The challenge finally selected is :
	> How could food improve the contact and engagement in Molenbeek (trade, distribution, farming and diet) ?

Step 2 : Set boundaries

Time > which year, short-term, long-term
	> 2015
Place :
	As we are talking of contact, we should identify a hub.
	Canal, future street, prosperity street, and parvis Saint Jean-Baptiste.

Step 3 : Mapping Molenbeek

What is the available material and context to improve things ?

Future street > there is the Dutch integration bureau for immigrants.
	Learn language and stuff.
Square (market space)
	Green grocers - wonderful turkish women
	Tea place
	Rotating chicken places
	5 mosks
	1 rental church
	Hair dresser
	Dumpling take-away
Rue de la prospérité
	School > 2.5-12 years old
Rue de l'école
	VKat > cultural center
Buildings along the streets
	Internal courtyards
Station Compte de Flandre
	Some empty fields with trees
	Soy making
	French cultural center
		Theatre group who go get coffee in café
	House to help women get independent and find jobs
	Arab women solidarity association
	Spontaneous cricket match
Psychological things
	Destructive against anything coming from an external source.
		Nothing to do, unemployment…
Historical matter
	Canal was distributing food, flower, grain, coal
		Docks and wearhouses
			Low paid work
	Get historical photographs.

Step 4, 5 and 6 : Drivers and critical uncertainties

Critical uncertainties : select critical points for reaching the objective, and uncertain drivers - not plannable.
Concentration of the young generation.
2 Diversity of available food.
Urban policy
3 Intolerance
1 Gentrification
The others
1 Islamification
Affordable food prices
Lack of public growing places
2 Waste
Climate change, gravity and solar flares
Car use
3 Engagement
Cultural identity
Crime and violence

Why growing plants ?

Food prices
Cultural identity

Try to pair them as opposites. Choose two pairs to plot that are absolutely not correlated to assign them to two axis.

We choose

Food diversity / waste
Curiosity / intolerance

Generate four scenarios for the four squares - all combinations of words below.

Step 7 : Vantage points

Maybe define them after a first development of scenarios.
	Different settings for the future
	Happening here
	Beyond control because of larger whole
	Ex : young people, demographics, climate change…
	Normative positionning is certain.
	Desirable paths to achieve the objective.
	Ex : crime reduction, cultural (incl. food) diversity, virtues…
	Development principles, growing system, with life-like processes.
	Inputs, outputs, flows.
	Ex : regeneration, food imports, traffic, goods, people, waste.
	Specific spatial characteristics
	Ex : the squeeze, market, destruction, churches

Basics for the narrative.

Food diversity and curiosity
	Different generations, different cultures
	Trying things out
	Colourful, good smells
	Leave no trace
	Everything is edible
	Continuous flow
	Everyone cooks
	Middle-eastern bazar
	Hawker center > street food courts
	Eater is selective
	Sharing and reduce variety
Food diversity and intolerance
	Separate meals
	Eating clubs
	Inaccessible and selective
	Provider is selective
	Food fights
	Competition and micro-variety
Intolerance and food/TV waste 
	TV dinners
	Waste fights
	Throw away dinners > fast prepacked food, rotating chickens
	High crime rate
	Bad smell
	Eerie quiet and erratic screams
	Sharp objects
	Cheap abandoned foods
	Fast eating
Curiosity and waste
	Freeganism > dumpster diving
	Inventive composting
	Inventive recycling
	DIY food and compost
	Only what is available
	Social contact

Tomorrow > names, fresh thoughts on scenario. Position on the ruler. Look the scenarios through diverse characters. Panarchy analysis for each scenario.

	Active, passive and real-time future.
	Growth, death and organization.

20120531 (Day 2)

Introductory discussion

Working with assumptions only arises the danger of having scenarios with no impact.


Advocacy vehicle
	Influencing on policy
Communication vehicle > assumptions is ok for this.

Selecting scenarios 2 and 4, focusing on scenario 2.

Step 8 : use the foodprints ruler

Food logistics > Trade and distribution Cultural dimensions > Accessibility and affordability Ecosystem type > Wetland Environmental challenges > Resource depletion Environmental benefits > Maintenance of biodiversity Urban food sources > Food markets Farming methods > Conventional farming Urban elements > Building

Step 9 : generating the narrative

Physical environment : crime, corruption, groups, cheating, mafia, wide price range, buildings, lots of rain, cement, no green, bodyguards, shopfronts, eating places in bakcplaces, sound of activity but not visible, resources depletion > price rise > intolerance building up, a club against all the clubs, rats, club entrance are cleaned, biodiversity, food delivery, anthems and flags, pressure on food providers, independant distribution channels, front door guards hire new people for the club.

Step 10 : identify in which stage of the panarchy we are

Conservation phase.

Step 11 : generate three possible futures

Active Future

People act in the present to shape their future, they are aware of the link between the two, and actively try to bring the future they are waiting for.

Destruction phase… Massive food fight, and then supplies run out. Everything turns into sludge on the ground. Police stucks the trucks, no one can move out. No one can see its club members : they are covered in food. Every one is pushed towards the square by javel attack. Fire, plasting bags, dead rats, cardboard, unwashed people, heavy smoke. Everything is stuck.

The following morning… Anyway to move in the streets. Inaccessible area. Still some porosity, allowing some people to go out. Amplification and dissipation of power structures.

Criminals get stuff in. They sell food against body services : maçonnerie and prostitution. But also… cooperation. People collaborating to build bridges, and sharing the last resources they have. Figgt between collaboration and club lords. Slowly, organisation around values rather than clubs.

Sky walks, to avoid touching rotting food.

Strange architectural stuff starts to appear > curiosity from outside the city.

Passive Future

People do not change their behavior, they are aware of some possible futures, but they do not change anything to their present or try to influence their future.

Resource scarcity > diversity and quality reduction > clubs loose of their pride > cheap affordable stuff.

Gentrification happen.

No one cleans the market > layers of stuff > bulldozers come and destroy everything > gentrification.

Disconnected real-time future

People do not care or think about the future. They just live in the present moment without thinking of tomorrow.

Helicopters bring people and supplies to the clubs. Poverty gaps.

Step 12 : Define the normative position

Compost knowledge. Do something with the TVs. Skywalks ?

Put all the TV on the square so that they have to remove it before they have the market.

Passive/disconnected future help understanding the normative position and the desirable future.

Evaluation of the process - Comments on how to improve it

Final step seeing if we have an answer for the question in the end > write a paragraph.

Workshops for composting. Just define a street where you dump your organic waste.

It's the interaction between a scenario and people's thought that is interesting.

Civilians, Brooklyn, NYC


Added clarity and detail without providing new information.
Narrow things down.

Tools are for conformation and clarifications, plus looking things at a whole (ex : wetlands).

Difficult starting the drivers.

Vantage points.

Way of defining scenarios.
Start the storyline.
Help realize you have to create a physical setting, look at the metabolism, in order to end up with a scenario.

Ranking drivers.

> Two most important and uncertain things.
  • resilients/scenario_workshop_201205.txt
  • Last modified: 2016-08-10 09:48
  • by nik