Category: futures Page 2 of 4

Learning futures and queer futuring

Our efforts to study and produce learning futures have led us to thinking about the following question: what are some just and ethical approaches that we can use toward creating more imaginative, hopeful, and powerful learning futures? In other words, how do we approach the work of generating learning futures with humility, openness, and recognition of the various ways in which various systems limit who participates in this conversation. For instance, there’s a dearth of instructional design models that account for equity, diversity, inclusion and justice, (OK, there’s maybe 2), and Stephanie Moore notes that the “models have are not the models we need.”

One approach specifically tied to learning futures that I came across comes from Fleener, M.J. and Coble, C. (2022), “Queer futuring: an approach to critical futuring strategies for adult learners”, On the Horizon, Vol. 30 No. 1, pp. 1-11.

Extended abstract in case others find it interesting is below.


The purpose of this paper is to develop queer futuring strategies that take into consideration adult learners’ needs in support of transformational and sustainable change for social justice and equity.


This paper develops the construct of queer futuring, which engages queer theory perspectives in a critical futures framework. Adult learning theory informs queer futuring strategies to support adults and inform education to sustain transformational changes for social justice and equity.


With social justice in mind, queer futuring opens spaces and supports opportunities for adults to engage in learning activities that address historical and layered forms of oppression. Building on learning needs of adults to create meaning and make a difference in the world around them, queer futuring strategies provide tools for activism, advocacy and building new relationships and ways of being-with.

Research limitations/implications

The sustainability of our current system of growth and financial well-being has already been called into question, and the current pandemic provides tangible evidence of values for contribution, connection and concern for others, even in the midst of political strife and conspiracy theories. These shifting values and values conflict of society point to the questions of equity and narrative inclusivity, challenging and disrupting dominant paradigms and structures that have perpetuated power and authority “over” rather than social participation “with” and harmony. Queer futuring is just the beginning of a bigger conversation about transforming society.

Practical implications

Queering spaces from the perspective of queer futuring keeps the adult learner and queering processes in mind with an emphasis on affiliation and belonging, identity and resistance and politics and change.

Social implications

The authors suggest queer futuring makes room for opening spaces of creativity and insight as traditional and reified rationality is problematized, further supporting development of emergentist relationships with the future as spaces of possibility and innovation.


Queer futuring connects ethical and pragmatic approaches to futuring for creating the kinds of futures needed to decolonize, delegitimize and disrupt hegemonic and categorical thinking and social structures. It builds on queer theory’s critical perspective, engaging critical futures strategies with adult learners at the forefront.


What Comes After Disinformation Studies(CFP)? What comes after universities?

The CFP below is relevant to education researchers who study mis/disinformation, digital literacies, and design/evaluate education interventions to interrupt misinformation flows. I’m also posting it as an example of a CFP that’s relevant to something a “what if” scenario been thinking about: what comes after universities? In other words, what does a radically different higher education landscape look like? What should such a landscape look like? While this work overlaps with the disciplines I find myself in (ID, education, edtech, curriculum & instruction, learning sciences), it has interesting interdisciplinary tentacles and connects with platform studies, platform cooperativism, postdigital studies, anticipation studies, decolonial studies, etc.

ICA Pre-Conference: What Comes After Disinformation Studies?

Paris, May 25, 2022

The médialab at Science Po

Submissions due: Friday, February 18, 2022 at 12pm ET

Submit here


The title of this pre-conference, “What Comes After Disinformation Studies?”, is something of a deliberate provocation. With an ongoing increase in authoritarian and nationalist politics globally over the past several years and the weakening of democratic institutions in many countries, scholarly and media attention to disinformation has exploded, as have institutional, platform, and funder investments towards policy and technical solutions. This has also led to critical debates over the “disinformation studies” literature. Some of the more prominent critiques of extant assumptions and literatures by scholars and researchers include: the field possesses a simplistic understanding of the effects of media technologies; overemphasizes platforms and underemphasizes politics; focuses too much on the United States and Anglocentric analysis; has a shallow understanding of political culture and culture in general; lacks analysis of race, class, gender, and sexuality as well as status, inequality, social structure, and power; has a thin understanding of journalistic processes; and, has progressed more through the exigencies of grant funding than the development of theory and empirical findings. These concerns have also been surfaced by journalists and community organizers in public forums, such as Harper’s Magazine’s special report “Bad News” in late August 2021; or, organizers highlighting the exclusions of communities of color in existing discourse and subsequent responses.

Even as disinformation has been the subject of growing academic debate, the relationship between disinformation, technology, and global democratic backsliding, white supremacy, inequalities, nationalisms, and the rise of authoritarianism globally remains unclear, and raises important questions of what constitutes healthy democratic systems.

Given this, the time is right to create and advance an interdisciplinary, critical, post-disinformation studies agenda that centers questions of politics and power. We are particularly excited to take the best existing aspects of the research that has been done so far and put it into dialog with other fields (such as history, feminist science and technology studies, critical race and ethnic studies, anthropology, social movement studies, etc.) that have their own perspectives on how to understand and study politics, technology, and media in the 21st century.

Submission Guidelines

This pre-conference is not structured around the traditional academic practice of “submitting a paper,” making a brief presentation, and then fielding follow-up questions from the audience. Instead, we ask everyone to submit a 2-3 page (1200-1500 word) “big idea” argument for what might come after, replace, or supplement disinformation studies (submission details at the end of the CFP). This paper should formulate a proposal for what comes after disinformation studies, analyze what needs to be done to supplement its analytical and methodological tools, or critique one or more of the major works in the field of disinformation studies as a jumping off point for considering the limits, and promises, of the existing field. Or, the proposal can be a combination of some or all of these things. In sum, we are looking for arguments that spur debate, discussion, and the generation of new perspectives.

In particular, this pre-conference seeks short reflections and provocations that answer, What should we be focusing our scholarly energies on, and how can we move our understandings of contemporary threats to democracy, public knowledge, political and social equality, and multi-racial and multi-ethnic societies forward? These submissions might address some of the following:

  • Draw on diverse traditions of scholarship (e.g. mass audience theory, cultural studies, postcolonial and decolonial studies, political economy and critical race theory) that help us place disinformation research within an interdisciplinary or cross-disciplinary context. For example, how might critical theory from the Frankfurt School or sociological theory from W.E.B Du Bois offer new lenses and perspectives on disinformation?
  • Emphasize non-U.S. and Anglocentric contexts and/or transnational approaches to the study of politics and platforms.
  • Historicize what are often very presentist debates on technology and information.
  • Discuss the ways in which often neglected social structures, social categories, and social identities play a role in differential experiences of disinformation, technological structures, and democracy, such as political expression and suppression; inequalities and asymmetries of information and technological access; or modes of state and institutional governance and the mobilization of security infrastructures.
  • Detail the theoretical, conceptual, and methodological tools necessary for understanding disinformation in different social, political, economic, cultural, and technological contexts (e.g. cross-disciplinary collaborations, community-engaged approaches, and qualitative and interpretive methods).
  • Draw on original empirical research in order to complicate the often-simplistic relationship between mis- and disinformation and political dysfunction and/or to offer considerations for how we may re-conceptualize approaches to digital harm and safety, platform governance, institutional trust, etc.

Please submit your “big idea” paper via this form by 5pm UK Time on Friday, February 18 (12 pm EST). 

Submissions should not exceed 3 single-spaced pages (or 1500 words maximum) and be submitted in .pdf or .docx format. Please include your complete name, title, and affiliation in the document header.


Pre-Conference Format

The conference aims to foster a series of overlapping conversations that will also introduce original empirical and theoretical research. It also aims to “democratize” the idea of the conference keynote. To these ends, the conference will operate in an “onion” format. There will be four, relatively short, invited keynotes presented over the course of the day (2 in the morning and 2 in the afternoon). These keynotes will then be followed by 3-4 also relatively brief paper presentations that will be related to the topic of the keynote just presented. The organizers will select the keynotes and paper presenters from submissions to the preconference based on consideration of the quality of the arguments, fit with other submissions, and interventions to address critical gaps in the field, as well as on the diversity of research profiles, methodologies and theoretical perspectives of the authors. After these talks, we will quickly open the conversation up to the audience so we can engage the entire room.

Cost and Logistics

There is no cost to attend this preconference. Coffee, tea, meals and dessert will be served over the course of the day.

The conference will be located at Sciences Po, Paris, 27 rue Saint-Guillaume (room Leroy-Beaulieu). It will also be possible to participate virtually.


Email with any questions. 


ICA Lead sponsor: Political Communication Division

ICA Co-sponsor: Ethnicity and Race in Communication Division

University of North Carolina Center for Information, Technology, and Public Life (CITAP)

University of Leeds School of Media and Communication

Science Po médialab

BC floods and school closures

We experienced destructive floods and mudslides in BC this week, due to an atmospheric river. The province has declared a state of emergency. Much has been said and written since March 2020 about the ongoing pandemic and school/university closures. At the same time, more and more colleagues are exploring the relationships between crises such as climate catastrophe and schools, education, and the futures of teaching and learning.

Below is an example of how this event is described as impacting MEI, an independent school district in Abbotsford BC, by the head of MEI Schools:

MEI will be CLOSED WEDNESDAY to FRIDAY, November 17th – 19th, 2021. Our staff will make every effort to provide online learning opportunities to our students on Thursday and Friday through the platforms we have used in the past including Schoology, Seesaw, and Zoom.

This has been a very difficult decision.

Abbotsford is in the midst of a formal State of Emergency. Late last night, the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) notified Abbotsford residents of what could be a “catastrophic” event in Sumas Prairie with the potential failure of the Barrowtown Pump Station. If it happens, this additional layer to the existing crisis will “pose a significant risk to life” impacting beloved MEI families ( The crisis is not yet receding, but seems to be gaining momentum.

I can confirm that our campus is ready to receive our staff and students, but the city does not seem ready to receive 1800 of us on the roads. Abbotsford’s EOC has given their support for schools west of Sumas Way to open for in-person learning. Although MEI is located in this region, we are not a catchment school. Rather, we are a commuter school with our community arriving from all parts of Abbotsford, Mission and into the Fraser Valley both east and west of our campus.

Currently, two of my 7-person leadership team, multiple staff, and MEI families have been trapped in the Hope/Coquihalla region since Sunday night. Additionally, multiple teachers, support staff, and many families representing more than 100 students will simply not be able to cross the prairie from the Chillwack area to report for work or attend classes.

If we open, we may not have enough staff for meaningful learning to take place or the basic supervision needed for the safety of our students. Additionally, we anticipate having classes that include some students in attendance and others unable or uncomfortable to attend…


CFP: Re-imagining education in the post-pandemic

The CFP below may be of interest to this blog’s readers. The speculative futures focus is important at this point in time, though the pitfall to watch out for is the overly optimistic outlook that our field often embraces. I’m not familiar with the journal, and note, that it requires a 300 GBP ACP.

CFP: Re-imagining education in the post-pandemic

We live in exceptional times. The ongoing Covid 19 pandemic exposes the fragility of dominant socio-cultural, political, and economic systems worldwide by uncovering the vulnerabilities of the public sector, of which education is a cornerstone. In the specific context of lockdowns and restrictions, digital technologies play a dominant role in enabling continuous communication between teachers and students. As enablers in educational activities, allowing for designing, assessing, and carrying out learning away from the regular classroom, digital technologies also disrupt established practices. The extraordinary circumstances of the year 2020 and their implications for teaching & learning constitute an inquiry area that pushes re-imagining education in the post-pandemic. Which technologies used during the pandemic are here to stay? What are the digital practices that teachers and/or learners would like to preserve in the post-pandemic? Why? How do the sociotechnical practices emerging with the pandemic impact pedagogical perspectives, models, and even relationships? What do we gain in education with the pandemic experience? What do we lose? What educational practices would we like to contribute to in the future  (i.e., ten years from now)?

Such questions are prompts aimed to spark a discussion on emerging social and technical imaginaries in education. Social imaginaries have been widely used as both a theory and a method to observe human capacity to bring new forms of being and doing into life through the power of thought and formulation (Chassay 2010; Jasanoff & Kim 2015; Jodelet 1989). They have been marked by creativity and unlimited possibilities that future-oriented imagination offers, as SF-literature bears witness to, and have been shaped by the constraints, limitations that history, culture, and social structures force upon humans (Castoriadis & Ricoeur 2016. Leblanc 1994). In the field of education, Neil Selwyn’s recent (2019) work on “What might the school of 2030 be like?” offers a helpful example of how social science fiction can be applied to explore how digital technologies might be used in a particular high school in 2030 and how they “might impact the people whose lives are enmeshed with these technologies” (p.90). Lina Rahm’s work on sociotechnical educational imaginaries (2019) is another enlightening example that unpacks sociotechnical imaginaries’ role in configuring educational practices and the digital citizen’s very concept.

Against this backdrop, this special collection focuses on re-imagining education in the post-pandemic as an invitation to reflect on: Which educational imaginaries of technology are in the making? How do they configure socio-material relations and practices in the aftermath of the transition to remote teaching and learning?

Within this frame of reference, we invite scholars, practitioners, Ed-tech designers, policy-makers, or other professionals working in the field of Learning Sciences, Learning Analytics, Technology-enhanced learning, Computer-supported collaborative learning, Educational Technology to critically reflect on the effects of the ongoing digitalization and datafication processes on learning and teaching practices for future – post-pandemic – education.

We accept original papers discussing conceptual works (i.e., presenting analytical frameworks or concepts), empirical cases or methods (i. e., social science fiction, design fiction, anticipatory methods, speculative methods) that contribute to reflect critically on the multiple effects of COVID 19 on the emerging educational imaginaries and educational practices of 10 years from now.

This call is an invitation to envision and reflect, using theoretical, empirical, or methodological works, on educational imaginaries of technology in the making.

Topics of interest are:

  • Data-driven educational practices
  • Adaptive/Personalized learning
  • AI in institutional decision-making
  • VR in education
  • Face recognition in education
  • Bio-sensors and Internet of things in the classroom
  • Digital deskilling
  • De-territorialization of schooling
  • Social Robots
  • Voice user interfaces
  • Social science fiction method
  • Design fiction method
  • Speculative methods (futuring methods)
  • The teacher as an innovator
  • Digital school culture
  • Other

We welcome submissions that follow the journal’s guidelines

The journal operates with an Article Processing Charge (APC), which covers all publication costs (editorial processes; professional copyediting, web hosting; indexing; marketing; archiving; DOI registration, etc.) and ensures that all of the content is fully open access. Please note the information regarding publication fees.

We will first screen each submission to ensure appropriate fit with the Journal’s mission and fit this call for papers. We will select manuscripts that will be assigned to an Associate Editor and two reviewers for further consideration. If a revision is granted, we expect authors to revise manuscripts within 25 business days.


  • The deadline for submissions of full articles is October 30, 2021.
  • Notification of acceptance December 31. 2021
  • Revisions are due March 1, 2022.
  • Publication April 30, 2022.

Editors for this special collection:
Teresa Cerratto Pargman,
Sirkku Männikkö Barbutiu,
Ylva Lindberg,
Anna Åkerfeldt,


Castoriadis, C. & Ricœur, P. (2016). Dialogue sur l’histoire et l’imaginaire social. Paris: Éditions de l’École des hautes études en sciences sociales, coll. « Audiographie ».

Chassay, J. F. (2010). Imaginaire de l’être artificiel (Approches de l’imaginaire). Québec: Presses de l’Université de Québec.

Jasanoff, S. & Kim. S.-H. (2015). Dreamscapes of Modernity. Sociotechnical Imaginaries and the Fabrication of Power. Chicago: Chicago University Press.

Jodelet, D. (1989). « Représentations sociales : un domaine en expansion », in D. Jodelet (ed.), Les représentations sociales. Paris, Presses universitaires de France, coll. « Sociologie d’aujourd’hui », 1989.

Kozubaev, S., Elsden, C., Howell, N., Søndergaard, M. L. J., Merrill, N., Schulte, B., & Wong, R. Y. (2020, April). Expanding Modes of Reflection in Design Futuring. In Proceedings of the 2020 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 1-15).

Leblanc, P. (1994). « L’imaginaire social. Note sur un concept flou », Cahiers internationaux de sociologie, vol. 97, Juillet-Décembre, 415-434.

Nationell handlingsplan för digitalisering av skolväsendet #Skoldigiplan (2019).

Rahm, L. (2019). Educational imaginaries: a genealogy of the digital citizen (Vol. 214). Linköping University Electronic Press.

Selwyn, N., Pangrazio, L., Nemorin, S., & Perrotta, C. (2020). What might the school of 2030 be like? An exercise in social science fiction. Learning, Media and Technology45(1), 90-106.

Surveys of Canadian students during the pandemic?

We are working on a project that is informed by surveys of Canadian post-secondary students during the pandemic. We have identified a number of surveys/reports and are making them available in this spreadsheet.

I’m certain we’re missing a few. Have you seen any other surveys or reports informed by student responses that we may be able to look at? Please leave us a comment below, and we’ll add new items to the spreadsheet.

EDUCAUSE Horizon Report 2021 – exemplar projects solicitation

Once again, this year I am supporting EDUCAUSE with their effort at producing this year’s Horizon Report by participating on the expert panel. The 2020 report was the first I contributed to, and I was incredibly excited with the shape it took compared to past Horizon Reports.

We have recently concluded the voting for the six most important technologies and practices for teaching and learning in higher education.

For 2021, we are continuing the long-standing tradition of reaching out to the community for projects that illustrate these technologies and practices in action. If your institution is working with any of the six (listed below), we encourage you to submit your projects and initiatives via the below-linked form. You are welcome to submit more than one project.

This work can be in almost any form: production or pilot programs, research projects, faculty undertakings, emerging technology trials, or evaluation/assessment projects. The intent is to give readers a more concrete sense of how these technologies and practices are playing out in higher education. We include three such exemplary projects for each of the six technologies and practices highlighted in the EDUCAUSE Horizon Report. We will also be inviting a subset of the authors of the submissions to write up their work in the post for the EDUCAUSE Review Teaching and Learning channel, or present this work in other venues including conferences or webinars.

The six emerging technologies and practices selected by the expert panel for 2021 are:
Artificial intelligence (AI)
Growth of micro-credentialing for educators and students
Learning analytics
Open educational resources (OER)
Proliferation of blended/hybrid modes/teaching models
Shift from remote teaching to quality online learning

The URL for the submission form is:

The deadline for submission is March 15, 2021. These exemplar projects are the heart of the Horizon Report. Many thanks in advance for contributing to the 2021 edition!

CICan perspectives live show: hacking education in a digital world

Recently, I was a guest on a live show hosted by Colleges and Institutes Canada. This episode focused on “hacking education in a digital world.” It focused on the question: How can colleges and institutes transform learning options to provide better access to postsecondary education for all Canadians in the context of a pandemic, and how can the success of the transformation be measured? The show is archived here, and past and current episodes are available on the CICan website.

My comments focused on a few major areas

  • that the impact of the pandemic on higher education institutions, students, and faculty in Canada has been uneven
  • that what we know from online learning research has much to offer to guide remote and emergency teaching and learning
  • that flexibility and flexible learning is important
  • that collaboration amidst the pandemic has served the higher education sector well, and we should do what we can to continue engaging in sharing and collaborations
  • that our post-pandemic future can be better (read more equitable, accessible, sensitive to student and societal needs, etc) than the pre-pandemic past

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