The Lab

The Futures Lab rallies scholars and practitioners from ASU and beyond to conduct critical and innovative research.

This suite of tools are designed to enable the courageous and rigorous exploration of alternative futures.


Emerge: A Festival of Futures is a free art, science, and technology festival that explores the future in evocative ways through an annual public event. Emerge offers an imaginative look into the future, exposing the latest inventions underway at ASU and beyond, and asking how they might be shaped and adapted by society in surprising ways.

The Futurescape City Tours (FCT) represent a novel method to discover alternative futures. Inspired by sci-fi author William Gibson’s provocation-- “the future is already here, it’s just unevenly distributed,” the FCT’s provide a method of discovering pockets of the future in the present.

While lawyers, legal scholars and legal systems are often described as being retrograde and, temporally speaking, focused on the past, they are regularly making futures. How does anticipation and science fiction fit into the law?


Mixing Civil Rights-era-styled conscious raising and postmodernist, speculative fiction-inspired consciousness razing, Afrofuturism is arguably the most vibrant mode of future-oriented thought, praxis and culture work in the contemporary African diaspora. What’s next in Afrofuturism?


How can we change the stories we tell about our collective futures? The American Dream is among our most powerful stories about the future – a lodestar for progress, prosperity, and equality that has deep meaning not only in the United States, but all over the world.


Advancing the theoretical and practical impacts of scenario planning, the OFF is a triennial two-day meeting of practitioners and scholars geared towards nurturing new collaborations in research, practice, and education.

Looking beyond the latest gadgetry of the Internet of Things, SHINE instead takes on a human-centered lens and asks: What are the social, ethical, cultural and legal dimensions of the proliferation of so-called “smart” objects and environments?

Cities are on the front lines of climate change and are responding in kind, working to build resilient urban systems and decarbonize. CapaCity develops and exchanges tools and knowledge that enable city administrations to implement sustainability solutions and make future-ready cities.