Project's Activities - The Wales Futures Network

The Observatory of Innovation (Cardiff University and FUTURREG Lead Partner), under the aegis of the FUTURREG project, has established the Wales Futures Network. It is open to all organisations that are interested in exploring key themes and questions from futures perspectives and also as a mechanism to share knowledge and understanding of these innovative planning tools.

The Network was inaugurated at an international conference – Making Futures Matter - on 7 February 2007 at the Holland House Hotel, Cardiff. The conference featured international futures experts, who provided perspectives from business, academia, government and NGOs. On 20 September 2007 it held its first sectoral conference addressing climate change adaptation – entitled CHALLENGING FUTURES: Adapting Wales to New Climates which was supported by the Environment Agency Wales, The Welsh Assembly Government, UK Climate Impacts Programme and The Sustainable Development Commission. Both events were open to partners within the FUTURREG network and elsewhere in Europe seeking to acquire more examples of best practice and sectoral applications similar and applicable to their own needs. The Network is still gaining momentum and will continue to function after the formal end of the FUTURREG project at the end of 2007.

Peter Finnemore, noted contemporary Welsh artist, was also commissioned by the Observatory of Innovation to create an Artwork which responded to the theme of Climate Change to be exhibited during the Wales Futures Network conference. This was subsequently developed and re-exhibited at the Final Conference of the FUTURREG Project in Sligo, Ireland 8-9 October 2007 in illustration of how futures can be better explained and interpreted through metaphoric means which compliment and sometimes excel the written word in their impact. [See photos and text]

All papers are available on the Wales Futures Network are available on its website http://www.futures.cardiff.ac.uk. We include a sample of the materials generated at the second conference on climate change adaptation, including scenario building workshops addressing 3 important themes: Housing & The Built Environment (A) & (B), Vulnerable Coastal Communities and Transport Policy.