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Media Future Week | December 3, 2022

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First keynote speaker: Scott Smith

First keynote speaker: Scott Smith

We are proud to present the first keynote speaker of MFW14: Scott Smith! Scott is the founder of Changeist, a lab, research tank and studio created to identify and make sense of weak signals of change. His work is built on over 20 years of experience in tracking social, cultural, technological and economic trends, and helping organizations navigate complex futures. Scott was a keynote coach at the MFW13 and impressed us with his views on ‘flatpack futures’, so we asked him back for this edition.

This year he will talk about Domestication by data. Increasingly, as we drown ourselves in data –  and surround ourselves with computing systems – we appear to be domesticating ourselves. The implications of this human domestication by data are only just becoming visible, but could have a profound impact on how we interact with technology in the near future, and what technology does to and for us as a society.

Before founding Changeist, Scott served as director of research applications and futurist at Social Technologies (now Innovaro), a foresight and innovation company, leading visioning around consumer lifestyle, social values and emerging technology. Prior to this, he spent a decade leading start-up research and consulting teams for international technology research firms, including founding and managing research teams at Jupiter in New York City, Current Analysis in Washington, DC and the Yankee Group in London. He has consulted to and developed research for some of the largest brands, non-profits and government agencies worldwide. He has consulted to global organizations such as Unicef, Nokia, Ford, Honda, Herman Miller, P&G, Barilla, Target, Cisco, British Telecom, Telefónica, NASA,The Economist Group and led field research in China, Japan, India, Turkey, Poland, Mexico, and across Western Europe and North America.

Scott was also co-developer and advisor for the Futures Institute at the Duke University TIP program and is currently visiting lecturer at IED Barcelona. For these and other futures learning labs he designs, Scott works with students to apply critical foresight and speculative design skills to develop creative responses to large-scale problems we may face in coming years. He also guest lectures on foresight and design at various institutions and is a commentary writer for Quartz.