We produce and reproduce results that nobody wants. We appear to live in a dictatorship of no alternatives [Unger], a pervasive, yet invisible barrier constraining action [Fisher] making it easier to imagine the end of the world [Jameson] than something different.
We are tethered to structures of thinking, doing and being that were conceived for a different world. Our transformative thinking and transformative politics have failed to master the change of structure [Unger]. Instead there is a sense of only being able to manage the inevitable, or at best create a humanizing gloss on the established regimes [Unger].
We have been unable to create the conditions to imagine and build new collective futures. We understand our inability to imagine a world in which things are different as the impossibility of change , rather than simply evidence of our poor imagination [Bergman]. We continue to see imagination at best as an individual capacity important in our early childhood development, rather than a collective and deeply social act; a muscle to be exercised, a set of skills to grow and master.
We believe that a rich social imagination is necessary for a healthy and dynamic society, but that our institutions, our media and our public discourse are desperately lacking it. Technocratic solutions are no longer sufficient in an age where global economics is undermining the social order and our world continues hurtling towards artificial intelligence, automation and their implications for us. The task is increasingly urgent.
"It is not a finished utopia that we ought to desire, but a life where imagination and hope are alive and active"