Future II: Final Reflection

Jasmin Kim
4 min readDec 6, 2021


Design practices were something that I used to define as “[only] feasible and current state-related opportunities that designers create.” In the past, maybe I’ve thought about how this creation might affect people as soon as it is announced to the world, but I didn’t really thought about how far, as in like 1000 years, future visions can be generated from new design opportunities and concepts.

In the beginning of the semester, I said, “in short-term, I hope I do well in my school-works, enjoy, and learn as much as I can.” I also felt pressure “to make everything worth it.” I said, in long term, “I would like to design for a social-impactful scale in the future, wishing that our world would be still sustainable/profitable.”

Now I think about it, I was too scared about opening myself. I think I was trapped inside my box and did not thought myself for wider possibility of hopes and fears. Which also leads to limited design thinkings and practices.

However, taking Futures courses, I learned that design practices can constantly evolve to meet new societal challenges. We’ve kept being taught/emphasized that new challenges and opportunities for designer can be created throughout STEEP changes out in the world. Throughout the course, we learned how to relate ourselves into futuristic situations and scenarios. I was able to put myself into futuristic shoes whether it is positively or negatively situated.

Understanding deeper relationship between design space and future context in short/long-term was a new point-of-view that made me to think about. Compared to the economic forces, the social forces evolve slower. And the environmental factors change even slower. But the pattern may not be the same for future generations. As a designer, I was able to elaborate, critique, and shape “possible, probable, and preferable” futures by creating understandable scenarios and design practices.

Especially from my 1000 Year closet project, I was able to experience diverse possible approaches to bring the future to life by materializing future experience in the present. Utilizing 3 Horizons and linking the visionary and the entrepreneurial (2 and 3) into our CompoClothes subscription idea was a new design method that I might use it for my other future design practices. Throughout my projects, I deeply considered about connections between how economic factors that naturally fluctuate frequently due to the way our society operates, and pacing of regenerative life cycles of the Earth. Compared to the economic forces, the social forces evolve slower. And the environmental factors change even slower. Over several generations, all of these factors will alter but I think I realized that our current thinking and actions will define how our future will be formed. And this could be improved by mapping design spaces with flexible transferable approaches from futures studies.

Talking about approaches from futures studies, Dator’s generic futures (i.e., Growth, Collapse, Discipline, Transformation) was very helpful for to me. As a designer, it helped me to have an idea of where to start and how to move ahead in regards to ideas/designs. In my own design practice, I think having the ability to explore these four images of the future in context with a design project bring up a lot of questions that I might not really consider before, and therefore aid in strong, well-rounded design. For example, by asking questions like “how will this environment be able to be communicated in a growth future or transformed future?” or “how will this idea work/evolve with change in Social/Technological/Environmental/Economical/Political aspects?”, that is how my team and I was able to come up with completely new, exciting ideas and create places that probably last longer and continue to be meaningful in the future.

For another design future method, I think CLA(Causal Layered Analysis) gave me a better understanding of how to craft a more transformative narrative for futures ideas. As a Communication Designer, I think is is useful in a “developing and framing” aspects. For me, I always had to compare and contrast among different topics and it is always hard for me to determine. However, this practice allowed me to analyze in a precise and reliable ways while ideating diverse topics during the course.

Utilization of these methods allowed me to have wider world views with broader aspects on a large society that I’ve living right now. Whether designing for a small/large-scale community, now I realize that I should question myself: “how does the system serve the audience?”, “how should I expand my design methods from human centered design thinking to include
design futures methods?”. Answering to these questions would eventually help me to make decision on what type analysis I need to compare and contrast.

From this course, I’ve also got to learn this new ideology, ‘eco-modern.’ I got to tackle this topic when my team and I had to bring the (1000yrs)future to life with an artifact. A lot of parts had to be considered and determined regarding existence, feasibility, and significance. The co-existence of two different aspects(nature and technology) and the fact that supports state action is centered on technology development was an interesting point for me. But I soon realized that my goal is to “elaborate, critique, and shape possible, probable, and preferable futures.”