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What future do we want – and deserve? Questions for the places, politics and pleasures of the hereafter


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A wise man once advised: ‘map out your future – but do it in pencil.’ If he’d said that today, though, would Jon Bon Jovi have suggested using a stylus, or ‘saving it in Drafts’?

So, where are we headed – and what will the journey be like? How do we deal with rapid change, how can we make more deliberate decisions – and how do we ensure we’re even included in that process?

In this forward-looking session, Cory Doctorow, Adam Liaw, Kristin Alford and Maggie Ryan Sandford will explore the changing technologies, social dynamics and global circumstances behind what’s coming next. What will our houses look like? What will we eat? What norms and beliefs will endure, and which will die off? What will replace growth, and how will it affect the ways in which we think of ourselves and others?

Note to early bookers: if you booked tickets to this event prior to Thursday 19 November, some details may have changed. Please check for details.




Cory Doctorow

Cory Doctorow is a science fiction author, activist, journalist and blogger – the co-editor of Boing Boing and the author of Walkaway, a novel for adults, a YA graphic novel called In Real Life, the nonfiction business book Information Doesn’t Want to Be Free, and young adult novels like Ho... Read more

Adam Liaw

Adam Liaw is a unique voice in Australian food. He is a food columnist for Fairfax and the Guardian, and the author of four hugely popular cookbooks on Asian cuisines. On television, Adam hosts the SBS food and travel program, Destination Flavour, now in its fourth season. He was the ... Read more

Kristin Alford

Kristin Alford is a futurist and founding director of foresight agency Bridge8 with a PhD in process engineering and a Masters of Management in Strategic Foresight. Her clients include government, corporate and non-for-profits where she builds capability to think and act effectively in response to b... Read more

Maggie Ryan Sandford

Maggie Ryan Sandford is a science journalist, fiction and comedy writer, and human behavior researcher at the Science Museum of Minnesota, whose work focuses on equity in science education, the relationship between science and art, and cetaceans. With a background in broadcast radio and TV productio... Read more

Michael Williams

Michael Williams joined Sydney Writers’ Festival in September 2020, as the Artistic Director navigating the post-pandemic landscape going into the 2021 festival. He has spent the past decade at the Wheeler Centre for Books, Writing and Ideas in Melbourne; as its founding Head of Programming in 200... Read more


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