This year we shift the focus away from the hazardous event in itself and place it in the interstices, the in-between-disasters spaces where our imagining of possible futures takes place. We interrogate the means through which we imagine, visualize, and construct possible alternatives of the future: various art forms, scenario building, table-top exercises, high tech simulations, as well as the way we communicate, manage and respond to them.
The conference is arranged along the lines of three broad themes:
Drawing from experience. This theme concerns the collective and individual experience in memory, cultural reproductions, recovery and therapeutic processes after crises and catastrophes. It also deals with organizational aspects of the aftermath of crises, as well as learning and evaluation.
Playing with Realities is about how we prepare for the future events by means of exercises, training and simulation. This theme is about methods, concepts and technologies in which we envision, simulate and enact different realities. A wide range of topics are relevant for this theme, from technical aspects, such as VR, AR, and AI to research on experimental design, simulation, scenarios and gaming.
Imagining Futures. What do future catastrophes look like? What do(es) the future(s) look like? In this theme, we welcome ideas, visions, dreams, fantasies and visualizations of possible alternatives, utopias and dystopias. This theme may include ideas about and perspectives of, the future, expressed in film, literature and other art forms as well as in politics and bureaucracy.
In keeping with the spirit of interdisciplinarity of the NEEDS conference series, we welcome panels, workshops and interdisciplinary events aimed at researchers and practitioners featuring research on how disasters are imagined but also on more traditional topics of crisis management, relevant actors and institutions.