SMART Futures for a Flourishing World: A Paradigm Shift for Achieving Global Sustainability

SMART Futures for a Flourishing World: A Paradigm Shift for Achieving Global Sustainability

“SMART Futures for a Flourishing World by Dr. Claire Nelson”
Dr. Claire Nelson’s book, SMART Futures for a Flourishing World offers us a ‘magical mystery tour’ that opens up new horizons, evokes both the sources of hope and despair, and inspires us to action to create a future of flourishing.

We know we have to change but the question is HOW.

Many of us feel powerless to solve the looming climate crisis, water crisis, food crisis, ocean pollution crisis and all other challenges that are enumerated by the 17 global sustainable development goals.

How do we get to a safe, just space for humanity? We see the clock ticking as Covid Pandemic lingers on and as we enter the “climate decade,” the ten-year period where our actions will determine the kind of world our children will live in.

How do we move from a state of ‘future shock’ to ‘future sense’? If we can build Smart cars, clothes, houses, cities and so on can we find a way to create smart futures? How might we find our way to sharing a flourishing future?

‘SMART Futures for a Flourishing World’ helps us see glimpses of our aspirational futures as far afield as the year 3000, and lays out a path for our journey to global sustainability.

Dr. Claire A. Nelson combines lessons from her career focused on international development and sustainability engineering with her personal experience in systems change making to share how show how a few, seemingly simple questions can create the conditions for improved design thinking and lead to significant transformational change.

Using stories of aspirational futures as a guide, SMART Futures takes us on a journey through myth and speculative fiction tinged with Afrofuturist sentiments that offer a decolonized perspective of preferred futures narratives — then shows us how asking the right five questions can help us make the paradigm shift needed to achieve a flourishing world.

Praise for SMART Futures for a Flourishing World

“In Smart Futures for a flourishing World, you meet an imaginative power that goes beyond the most of expected horizons. In this fairy tale from the long and not so long distant future, Claire Nelson, not only force us to think through some basic social political perspectives” – ERIK F. ØVERLAND PH.D., PRESIDENT, WORLD FUTURES STUDIES FEDERATION

“What emerges is a set of design truths that should capture our attention and activate us to mobilize. Dr. Nelson weaves a compelling perspective on our collective future as a single human race and establishes a visionary and principled foundation of sustainability, morality, agency, resilience, and technology, that is inspirationally moving.” – PROFESSOR KEMPER LEWIS, DEAN OF THE SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING, UNIVERSITY OF BUFFALO

“This book is a unique seed of hope accompanied by exclusive nourishment of Dr. Claire Nelson’s matchless wisdom. The result is this audacious volume that bonds us all at the primal level of chills that accurate prophesies send down our spine. Yet it maintains a gentle sense of humor poking fun at, while warning in no uncertain terms against our shortsighted, misguided priorities.” – PROFESSOR SIRIN TEKINAY, CHAIR, GLOBAL ENGINEERING DEANS COUNCIL

“This visionary synthesis of our current global situation uses the tools of science fiction, prophecy, and policy analysis in combination to make a compelling description of where we are and where we could get to, in terms of making a good future for humanity.” – KIM STANLEY ROBINSON, BESTSELLING SCIENCE FICTION AUTHOR

About the Author:

Dr. Claire Nelson is Chief Ideation Leader of The Futures Forum, a research and education practice specializing in bringing the power of strategic foresight, and the discipline of sustainability engineering to challenges facing organizations and communities. Nelson, named on Forbes as one of the top 50 female futurists in the world, is author of the game-changing book “SMART Futures for a Flourishing World: A Paradigm for Advancing Global Sustainability”.

A sought-after speaker and consultant, Nelson’s engagements have included: African Development Bank; World Bank; the US Air Force; World Steel; UNESCO; Scotia Bank;  the Pacific Summit; University of the West Indies; University of Tennessee, and BET/CENTRIC. Dr. Nelson is a Member of the Board of the World Futures Studies Federation as well as Editor-At-Large of its flagship publ ication Human Futures Magazine. She also serves as an Advisor to Humans for AI, Global Carbon Reward, Engineering One Planet, and Morgan State University International Vice-Presidency. A social entrepreneur, Dr. Nelson is Founding President of the Institute of Caribbean Studies, the leading Caribbean American Diaspora organization and celebrated as the Convening Chair of the Campaign for June as National Caribbean American Heritage Month. She is Curator of the Caribbean American Legislative Forum on Capitol Hill and White House Briefings, and Founder of the Caribbean Space Society.

Dr. Nelson, an award-winning writer and storyteller, has performed her one woman show ‘Moon Runnings: The Life & Times of the First Jamaican on the Moon’ at the ASU Emerge Festival of the Future, UNESCO, the Museum of Science Fiction, Salzburg Seminar and International Moon Day.

The only Black female in her graduating class, she holds a Doctorate in Engineering Management from the George Washington University (1990). Dr. Nelson was named a White House Champion of Change in 2012.

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