What is Massive Change?
Design has emerged as one of the world’s most powerful forces. It has placed us at the beginning of a new, unprecedented period of human possibility, where all economies and ecologies are becoming global, relational, and interconnected.
In order to understand and harness these emerging forces, there is an urgent need to articulate precisely what we are doing to ourselves and to our world. This is the ambition of Massive Change.
Massive Change is a celebration of our global capacities but also a cautious look at our limitations. It encompasses the utopian and dystopian possibilities of this emerging world, in which even nature is no longer outside the reach of our manipulation.
For many of us, design is invisible. We live in a world that is so thoroughly configured by human effort that design has become second nature, ever-present, inevitable, taken for granted.
And yet, the power of design to transform and affect every aspect of daily life is gaining widespread public awareness.
No longer associated simply with objects and appearances, design is increasingly understood in a much wider sense as the human capacity to plan and produce desired outcomes. Engineered as an international discursive project, Massive Change: The Future of Global Design, will map the new capacity, power and promise of design.
Massive Change explores paradigm-shifting events, ideas, and people, investigating the capacities and ethical dilemmas of design in manufacturing, transportation, urbanism, warfare, health, living, energy, markets, materials, the image and information. We need to evolve a global society that has the capacity to direct and control the emerging forces in order to achieve the most positive outcome. We must ask ourselves: Now that we can do anything what will we do?
The best way to express the capacities of our modern world is through its fullest range of media. To date, Massive Change has taken on the form of a traveling exhibition, a book, a series of formal and informal public events, a radio program, an online forum, and this blog. Since the exhibition’s opening in October 2004, several school boards have expressed interest in incorporating the project’s ideas into educational curriculums.