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Brazil’s rivers of creativity: FutureLeague Rios de Encontro

Brazil’s rivers of creativity: FutureLeague Rios de Encontro

“We know a new politics of solidarity, individual responsibility and collective transformation is urgently needed. Can we culturally educate ourselves to understand how to create it?” This question has driven community-based arts educator, author, playwright, poet and eco-cultural activist Dan Baron Cohen for many years. He’s travelled from ground-breaking work in post-industrial Manchester and conflict-transformation projects

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Brazil’s eco-cultural youth activists: Rios de Encontro

Brazil’s eco-cultural youth activists: Rios de Encontro

“The youth are co-creators, coordinators and researchers of everything that Rios de Encontro does.” – Dan Baron Cohen, Co-founder, Rios de Encontro In the small Afro-Indigenous community of Cabelo Seco, Marabá City in Brazil – once known as a ‘no-go favela’ – an arts-as-transformation project in the Amazon is addressing the survival of both the community and our

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Enter the magical, curious world of Beakerhead

Enter the magical, curious world of Beakerhead

“It’s in the freely shared ideas that collisions, oddities and thrills emerge.” – Mary Anne Moser, Beakerhead Co-founder Widely known as ‘the world’s greatest arts-science smash-up’, Beakerhead makes breaking down the complex look effortless – but it takes a collective effort to make STEAM this fun. A fire-breathing serpent mother, inflatable octopus, trash robot, giant

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► Gary Cohen: The healthcare warrior transforming a sick society

► Gary Cohen: The healthcare warrior transforming a sick society

Today health care practitioners worldwide take the Hippocratic Oath to “First, do no harm”. In the ultimate irony, hospitals and health care centres are the biggest polluters on the planet. As the co-founder and president of Health Care Without Harm, Gary Cohen has created an international coalition of more than 500 members in 53 countries working to transform

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The race is on to reimagine fashion

The race is on to reimagine fashion

The problem of fast fashion is – by its nature – accelerating quickly. In the UK alone, people are purchasing five times as many clothes as they did in the 1980s, and the global fashion industry is now responsible for 10% of annual global carbon emissions. But on the rise, too, is the number of ideas

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Giving deadstock new life: meet FutureHero Stephanie Benedetto

Giving deadstock new life: meet FutureHero Stephanie Benedetto

Stephanie Benedetto has repurposed fabric in her blood. At the end of the 19th century, her great grandfather started finding unused textiles and turning them into clothes. A hundred years later, Stephanie has taken the same idea and run with it. In 2018, she launched Queen of Raw – an online marketplace that uses blockchain technology

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Cameroon’s protector of the oceans: FutureHero Ismaël Ebone ⚡

Cameroon’s protector of the oceans: FutureHero Ismaël Ebone ⚡

“I have a deep desire to make Africa a better place.” From its volcanoes to its tropical rainforests, Cameroon is one of the most biodiverse countries in Africa. Often considered the ‘second lungs of the earth’, the Congo Basin boasts a beautiful coastline, mountains, savanna, desert and tropical rainforests – and endangered species like bonobos,

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Meet the fashion mavericks: FutureHeroes Kate Fletcher & Mathilda Tham

Meet the fashion mavericks: FutureHeroes Kate Fletcher & Mathilda Tham

Fashion can put the Earth first. Two academic activists prove how – in a bold new plan. The clothes we wear allow us to express our identity, individuality and creativity, and fashion often plays with fantasy to stunning effect. A darker fantasy lurks within the fashion industry, however: the fantasy of never-ending growth on a

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► Make my May! 31 Editor’s Picks for a spring spent at home

► Make my May! 31 Editor’s Picks for a spring spent at home

Welcome to Groundhog May. In most parts of the world May is a time of joy, when everything seems possible; spring has sprung, swifts and swallows swoop, trees blossom and buds open (in my case, chilli plants). And the birds and bees go for it.  While this spring will be remembered as the one where everything

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‘Back to the true source’: guest post by farmer Abby Rose

‘Back to the true source’: guest post by farmer Abby Rose

 “It has become crystal clear that food is one of the most valuable things in our lives.” Abby Rose was named one of ’50 New Radicals’ by The Guardian and Nesta in 2018 for her work as co-creator of Farmerama Radio, an award-winning podcast sharing the voices behind regenerative farming, and as co-founder of Vidacycle, developing simple apps that

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Get ‘outside’ with the Wonderful Wizard of Minecraft: FutureHero Adam Clarke ⚡

Get ‘outside’ with the Wonderful Wizard of Minecraft: FutureHero Adam Clarke ⚡

Think adults don’t play Minecraft? Think again. Games help solve society’s challenges. Minecraft is a lot more than the biggest video game in the world, with a community of nearly half a billion players. Set inside a map made up of virtual blocks, it’s a game of possibilities that has become a global pop phenomenon, an educational tool

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🌳 AtlasWeekly: fair fashion, easy farming & climate-comedy

🌳 AtlasWeekly: fair fashion, easy farming & climate-comedy

What a week. (Does anyone know what day it is?) This week saw the digital landscape flooded with action: Earth Day turned 50 and went digital for the first time – and Fashion Revolution, the world’s largest fashion activism movement, named (and shamed) the transparency of the world’s biggest brands. As fashion, culture and climate

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► Home alone together: 33 things to read, watch, listen & chill out to

► Home alone together: 33 things to read, watch, listen & chill out to

Good news: Kindness has gone viral. OK, things are definitely weird now that we’re inside for the foreseeable. But on the plus side, the coronavirus outbreak’s crowning glory is a digital tidal wave of sharing, collaboration, mutual support and entertainment.  Volunteering sites like Invisible hands are quickly mobilising communities to pull together to deliver supplies

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5 innovations that prove real heroes wear scrubs ⚡

5 innovations that prove real heroes wear scrubs ⚡

If ever there was a time to get innovative, it’s now. While Tuesday saw World Health Day give respect and support to the people protecting our lives around the world, we all know that all the claps in the world will never be enough. So do everyone a favour: stay at home and read these five amazing innovations from

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You can help reverse extinction: guest post by John Elkington

You can help reverse extinction: guest post by John Elkington

Something wicked this way comes, but then a lab comes along to challenge it… Known to many as the ‘Godfather of sustainability’, John Elkington has been interested in conservation and challenge prizes for decades. That’s why the serial entrepreneur is on the board of Conservation X Labs, a nonprofit tech company that spurs bold, unconventional solutions to

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When hugs are banned: guest post by Maff Potts

When hugs are banned: guest post by Maff Potts

Maff Potts is the founder of Camerados – a growing social movement in the UK that has a simple, but powerful approach: “looking out for each other”.  Who would have thought we’d live in a world where hugs are discouraged, or handshakes, or spending time together? (Surely Netflix have taken it too far by creating a high concept series

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⚡ The future is phenomenal: 20 kick ass women for 2020

⚡ The future is phenomenal: 20 kick ass women for 2020

As a women-led team, you don’t need to get us started on the concept of Women’s Day. Every day we celebrate the collective efforts of those who care about human rights. However, 8 March 2020 gives us an excuse to introduce you to 20 of our favourite female FutureHeroes – starting with a jazz-loving Brooklynite who’s “super-nerdy”

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FutureHero Dr. Knatokie Ford: Wonder Woman of STEM

FutureHero Dr. Knatokie Ford: Wonder Woman of STEM

Biomedical scientist, South Central Los Angeles teacher, Obama White House Senior Policy Advisor, creative science communicator and #BlackGirlMagic ambassador; you would never know that Dr. Knatokie Ford was once a “shy girl” who had to learn to deal with confidence issues. But she did, and made her way from Harvard University onto the White House and

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► WANTED: Content creator for Atlas of the Future (Barcelona)

► WANTED: Content creator for Atlas of the Future (Barcelona)

Atlas of the Future is growing. Join the team! We have an exciting new job opportunity for a Barcelona-based digital media content creator/editorial assistant – fluent in Catalan, Spanish and English.    About us ► Atlas of the Future is a joyous resource of hope – an online map of inspirational stories about the people dedicated to solving our

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AtlasVideo ► Inside the event: Fixing the future 2019

AtlasVideo ► Inside the event: Fixing the future 2019

“I am the Amazon. Please look after me.” Thought–provoking and emotional, the stirring sound of a 22-year-old afro-indigenous eco-activist from the Brazilian Amazon drumming on a Barcelona stage signified the beating heart and soul of our planet, an urgent need for a new era… and the start of Fixing the future 2019. This year’s event opened

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The sex robots are coming…

The sex robots are coming…

The global sex tech industry is huge – and growing. Today sex is more accessible than ever, with the sex toy market predicted to be worth U$35 billion, and advancing rapidly as companies apply robotics to sex dolls.   Promoting itself as the first of its kind, in Barcelona you can savour the world’s first hyper-realistic sex doll

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💥 15 rebels with a cause: bold ideas from unlikely places

💥 15 rebels with a cause: bold ideas from unlikely places

“In these volatile times, with so much in flux, there’s everything to play for.”  The most daring innovators aren’t found in boardrooms or tech startups, but in protests, street markets, prisons and refugee camps… and at Meaning Conference. Taking place this year on 14 November at Brighton Dome in the UK, expect encounters with pioneers on the edges

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The FutureHero fighting for ocean justice: Ayana Elizabeth Johnson

The FutureHero fighting for ocean justice: Ayana Elizabeth Johnson

Celebrated ocean conservationist Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson knows that caring about the ocean doesn’t just mean thinking about marine ecosystems, but people too. That’s why the invertebrate-loving Brooklynite has made her focus the intersection between ocean conservation, coastal communities and social justice. “There is a home for everyone in this movement – in conservation, climate

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FutureHero Easkey Britton: Surfing the big waves of a sustainability storm

FutureHero Easkey Britton: Surfing the big waves of a sustainability storm

Easkey Britton is an ocean pioneer in so many respects. A multiple championship-winning and big wave surfer. An interdisciplinary academic researcher, driven by a passion for our intimate, interdependent and inextricable relationship with the oceans. A powerful advocate for diverse voices and an intuitive seeker of deeper, embodied truths about connection, meaning and purpose.  “The

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This ‘climate geekess’ FutureHero uses the law to protect the planet

This ‘climate geekess’ FutureHero uses the law to protect the planet

“If you want to do something about climate change, change the politics. Use the system to fight the system.” Imagine being able to say that the Earth is your client. Self-proclaimed ‘climate geekess’ Kirsty Schneeberger is in that humbling position. Honoured at just 25-years-old for services to environmental conservation by the Queen of England, the

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FutureHero Alex Atala: Enter the jungle with Brazil’s top chef

FutureHero Alex Atala: Enter the jungle with Brazil’s top chef

“Ants are an example of the little surprises gastronomy can give us.” Amazonian fruits, canastra cheese, fermented manioc, ants; these are just some of the Brazilian indigenous ingredients being championed by South America’s number one chef, Alex Atala. Named by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people on the planet, the double

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Dope doodles and dreams: art jumps out of the box

Dope doodles and dreams: art jumps out of the box

… and into gyms, refugee camps and pirate radio. These 8 colourful projects combine art, creative optimism and street smarts from Lombok to Lagos.   1. Togetherness starts with a tee Check out the doodles above by New York-based illustrator Jon Burgerman, with dreamscapes by Emmy-winning artist Mike Perry and Supermundane’s bold lettering. Top street

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The new normal: the gender-equal future of festivals

The new normal: the gender-equal future of festivals

“Why do an equality lineup now? Because we should have done it ages ago.” It’s 2019 and we’ve all had enough. Frustrated with a lack of diversity and ‘male, pale, stale’ panels and lineups at events, one Spanish festival has declared a 50/50 gender ratio benchmark. They’re calling this ‘The New Normal’. We’re talking about Primavera Sound.

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Biodiversity: save the bees, the trees and the chimpanzees

Biodiversity: save the bees, the trees and the chimpanzees

Biodiversity is a hot topic at the moment, but what is it? Put simply, biodiversity helps regulate climate, air, soil and pretty much all of the good things we need for life. But a drop in global biodiversity is putting our ability to produce food at risk. Insects are dying off at record rates — an

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► Fixing the future is back! Meet the speakers…

► Fixing the future is back! Meet the speakers…

We’re overjoyed to announce that ‘Fixing the future’ is back. And this year it’s bigger, better and faster – because the future can’t wait.  ► Download the full programme After 2018’s sold out event in Barcelona, we’re returning to the CCCB – in partnership with Holaluz – with TWO full days and 40+ FutureHeroes from around the world. This time

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Vegan Top 9 AtlasChart: What an eggscellent time to be alive

Vegan Top 9 AtlasChart: What an eggscellent time to be alive

An egg has become Instagram’s most-liked post ever. Yep, a regular egg. In its shell, without avocado. The world’s most famous egg now has 54 million likes on Instagram (and counting). Welcome to 2019… Despite its rising profile, the industrial egg is starting to crack as people look for plant-based solutions. Is the egg toast? As Veganuary convinces people to ditch meat

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► Inside the event: 2018 CultureFutures

► Inside the event: 2018 CultureFutures

For the past year Atlas of the Future has been excited by creative and cultural projects with a social mission. We’ve been chatting with the artists, filmmakers, photographers, illustrators, curators and collectives who are building a better – more colourful and imaginative – world. We call this storytelling project #CultureFutures. In November we introduced you to

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Happy holidays! 12 days of good actions

Happy holidays! 12 days of good actions

Have you been naughty or nice this year? Good news: you can redeem yourselves! As the bumpy, transformative, but never-boring 2018 comes to a close, we’re spinning ‘The 12 days of Christmas’ into 12 sparkly, positive ways to take action and spread holiday cheer. No ode to conspicuous consumption here. Join a flavour mutiny, put plastic

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AtlasVideos ► If you own fossil fuels, you own climate change

AtlasVideos ► If you own fossil fuels, you own climate change

Climate change is probably the most urgent problem facing our species and the planet today. It even threatens the existence of our favourite species: homo sapiens. In September we went to the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS 2018) in San Francisco to create a series of videos on a global investor movement that’s accelerating the

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We mean business: behind the scenes of Meaning 2018

We mean business: behind the scenes of Meaning 2018

Turbulent headlines on the morning of 14 November (in the form of a domino run of Brexit-toppled MPs) provided a poignant backdrop for the gathering of 500 future-conscious minds at the Brighton Dome, who had come to hear about strategies for making sense of – and creating sense in – an often precarious world. Meaning,

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#CultureFutures: Meet the creators on 28 November!

#CultureFutures: Meet the creators on 28 November!

Because it’s not all about science and tech you know, we’ve been on a mission to map creative and cultural projects for social good. Now it’s time to introduce you to some of those creators fighting for a better future and more imaginative world – in person! Join us at in London at Goldsmiths, University

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AtlasEvent 24 November, London: The Collective City

AtlasEvent 24 November, London: The Collective City

If you’ve taken part in a morning rave, group run or public art experience; if you’ve joined a campaign to improve your neighbourhood or teamed up to better your workplace; if you’ve shared knowledge or data to bring about a change you want to see, you will know the joy and power of the collective.

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Lynne Segal: joyously radical

Lynne Segal: joyously radical

Good news: the power of true happiness can be discovered collectively. Australian-born, British-based socialist feminist academic and cheery activist Lynne Segal wants us to embrace the art of ‘radical happiness’ – the liberation that comes with transformative, collective joy.  With such obvious ecological disaster looming and an ideology of individual happiness thriving, today, more than ever, we

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FutureLeague Fab City Global: DIY cities of tomorrow

FutureLeague Fab City Global: DIY cities of tomorrow

Imagine if you could click a button and be able to grow and make almost anything. That’s what Fab City is all about: a creative collective of pioneers and makers who simply want digital technology to make the world more self-sufficient. And they’re doing it more than one city at a time. In fact, 28 cities are already

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AtlasEvent 24 November, London: The Collective City

AtlasEvent 24 November, London: The Collective City

If you’ve taken part in a morning rave, group run or public art experience; if you’ve joined a campaign to improve your neighbourhood or teamed up to better your workplace; if you’ve shared knowledge or data to bring about a change you want to see, you will know the joy and power of the collective.

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Fab City Summit 2018: A new urban manifesto

Fab City Summit 2018: A new urban manifesto

Imagine if you could get a ‘city’ to agree to making the world more self-sufficient. A creative team of pioneers and makers is doing exactly that. They’ve created a set of ten principles as a sort of instruction manual to build a more sustainable and inhabitable new world. And they’re getting cities to agree to it. In fact, 28

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Get cooking! ► 5 recipes for a better world

Get cooking! ► 5 recipes for a better world

Did you know you don’t always have to cook with food? As part of our new CultureFutures project we’ve been digging deep into the imaginations of artists, chefs, designers and material makers as they help build a better world – in all its delicious glory. From precious plastics to seeds with stories, in this week’s Future 5 we’re

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FutureLeague: Beakerhead is the world’s greatest arts-science smash-up

FutureLeague: Beakerhead is the world’s greatest arts-science smash-up

Did you hear the one about the hot tub, the actor and the quantum physicist? How about the one with the inflatable octopus, the trash robot and the fire-breathing serpent mother? No joke, for all of the above, you just need enter the curious world of Beakerhead – a place where arts, engineering and science

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Behind the scenes: stand up for Common Wealth’s theatrical activism

Behind the scenes: stand up for Common Wealth’s theatrical activism

“We want to drive political action with our work, and I don’t think you can do that sitting down.” – Rhiannon White, Common Wealth Co-founder At a Common Wealth Theatre performance, there’s no sitting back and letting it happen. Wandering through living rooms, factory floors and boxing rings, theatre-goers are invited into the story – as

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Videos ► What is ‘cleantech’? – and other LA stories

Videos ► What is ‘cleantech’? – and other LA stories

In an era of rising environmental awareness, cleantech has become the fastest-growing technology sector in the world. And sunny California loves it. That’s why they buy more electric cars and do more recycling than any place else. So what is ‘cleantech’? At its simplest, it’s any technology that helps a more efficient use of natural resources. We travelled

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FutureHero Steve Rader: NASA, Mars – and you

FutureHero Steve Rader: NASA, Mars – and you

The things NASA want to do next are “really, really hard”. That’s why Steve Rader – NASA’s Deputy Manager for the Center of Excellence for Collaborative Innovation – appreciates the way the space agency harnesses people power and diversity. We circumnavigated the mighty Saturn V rocket with the crowdsourcing evangelist to find out about NASA’s current challenges – and The Martian.

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Create better futures with storytelling, media and fashion

Create better futures with storytelling, media and fashion

An anonymous pirate radio DJ in Nairobi, ‘electro-modern’ remixes in Costa Rica, slum kids with cameras in Argentina and miraculous videos from the streets of San Francisco; this week’s #CultureFutures collection is an audiovisual treat. Over the past few months we’ve been digging deep into the joyful world of virtual reality, comic book artists, filmmakers, photographers,

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FC Barcelona and the rise of the fan-run football club

FC Barcelona and the rise of the fan-run football club

Football is the biggest sport in the world with an estimated 3.5 billion fans, but as the average fan is being increasingly priced out and disregarded, several football teams are striving to do things their way. Liverpool-based Jack Atkins donned his scarf to find out more about community-run football… If boxing is the ‘sport of

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AtlasQ&A Dan Barber ► 6 questions for a food FutureHero

AtlasQ&A Dan Barber ► 6 questions for a food FutureHero

From culinary creativity and food fads to a dystopian future soil crisis, friends of the Atlas ask Dan Barber – Blue Hill chef and co-founder of Row 7 Seed Company – their burning questions…    1. Ande Gregson, founder of GreenLab, an experimental space in London for urban agriculture: “Is urban agriculture future or fad?

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Culture for good ► Bring about the change we want to see

Culture for good ► Bring about the change we want to see

Fasten your helmets as this week we’re exploring creativity in the most toxic place on earth and getting lost in the labyrinth that is your own mind. Every fortnight we’re on a mission to bring you in-depth interviews with the people behind creative and cultural projects with a social mission. As part of new storytelling

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FutureHero Dougie McMaster: Ethical Jedi chef

FutureHero Dougie McMaster: Ethical Jedi chef

Britain’s most ethical restaurant doesn’t have a bin. Founded by ex-St John chef Dougie McMaster, the team at Silo brews its own booze, mills its own flour, churns its own butter and even has chairs made from jeans and plates formed from plastic bags.  At the UK’s first ever zero waste restaurant, all materials are digestible by

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Who made my clothes? Fashion Revolution Top 5

Who made my clothes? Fashion Revolution Top 5

Two fashion entrepreneurs are turning the industry inside out by asking difficult questions. Do you know who made your clothes; who grew the cotton, spun the threads, dyed the fabric and sewed them together? Orsola de Castro and Carry Somers (pictured below) are bringing the hidden people behind what we wear into the public eye – from

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AtlasChart Tomás Diez: A hands-on Top 9

AtlasChart Tomás Diez: A hands-on Top 9

“We either build the future we want, or become the victims of it.” As Director of Fab Lab Barcelona at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia, Tomás Diez constantly breaks the rules when it comes to education, business, science, urbanism, farming, environmentalism, design, and housing… you name it. In this AtlasChart, the Venezuelan digital fabrication urbanist opens up about projects in

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► Ready Player One: the future is already here

► Ready Player One: the future is already here

In the 1980s, sci-fi prophet William Gibson coined the term ‘cyberspace’ to describe a consensual hallucination created by millions of computers that we can jack into. By 2003 the visionary had warned: “The future is already here — it’s just not very evenly distributed.” Even though we are optimists at the Atlas, we’re also big fans of dystopian

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Fixing the future: Adventures in a better tomorrow

Fixing the future: Adventures in a better tomorrow

Are you ready for the good, the bad and the ugly? Here’s the bad news: the world is broken. The good? This lot can help us fix it. And now for the ugly: it’s going to get messy. Luckily there are plenty of people who are happy to get stuck in. Having now mapped over

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Adventures with FutureHero Gaia Vince in The Age of Humans

Adventures with FutureHero Gaia Vince in The Age of Humans

This year it will be ten years since environmental journalist and broadcaster Gaia Vince began her 900-day journey around the world to take stock of humanity’s impact on the planet. Back then she never expected to see the important changes now happening globally – the explosion of renewable energy production, the rise of electric vehicles, tariffs

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FutureHero Nelly Ben Hayoun: Designing the impossible

FutureHero Nelly Ben Hayoun: Designing the impossible

Faster-talking than the speed of light, louder than a sonic boom and sparkier than a volcano, extreme ‘experience designer’ Nelly Ben Hayoun has simulated all of the above. The hyperreal world is her disaster playground. From the safety of her East London pad, the French space enthusiast catapults us through her flights of fancy-made-real – including

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Fixing the future: Introducing the event line up!

Fixing the future: Introducing the event line up!

Future curious? On 13 March a future-‘supergroup’ will gather for the first time in Barcelona. Brought to you by Atlas of the Future and Ara, ‘Fixing the future: adventures in a better tomorrow’ will explore the talent solving the audacious goals of our planet with radical methods. Join us at the CCCB to meet the innovators

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Un dia ‘fixing the future’ amb l’Atlas del Futur

Un dia ‘fixing the future’ amb l’Atlas del Futur

Coneix deu ments brillants que estan canviant el món! Tenen en comú que han trobat solucions a reptes globals que semblava que no en tenien i les han posat en pràctica. Són, doncs, “arregladors” del futur que per primera vegada es trobaran a Barcelona el dimarts 13 de març a la jornada ‘Fixing the Future adventures in

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Feel the love! 20 reasons 2017 gave us so much joy

Feel the love! 20 reasons 2017 gave us so much joy

When you find yourselves somewhere between Gotham City Police HQ and Blade Runner’s Leon’s Hotel chatting to a Westworld sexbot you know that it’s been an interesting – and surprising – year. OK, it’s been relentless too, but there are so many reasons to feel hopeful. From Cameroon to Patagonia, 2017 has seen your projects make the

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Competition: Cities for a Flying World

Competition: Cities for a Flying World

What do Uber flying cars, Hoversurf drone taxis, Amazon’s giant mothership zeppelin, the Soviet city in the sky and these visions of high-elevation life have in common? Apart from being visionary proposals that are hard to distinguish from science fiction, they are also inspiration for ‘Cities for a Flying World’ – an international competition launched in May 2017 by Shukhov Lab (from the HSE

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An interview with our Editor

An interview with our Editor

This week we’re ‘happy’ to introduce you to a new monthly UK magazine which is aiming to create a healthier, happier and more sustainable world; Happiful focuses on the ‘interior’ world of thoughts, feelings and emotions – and how these relate to society. Like the Atlas, there’s no beauty, or trendy ways of living, pushing products or

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AtlasChart: A Maker Faire Top 5

AtlasChart: A Maker Faire Top 5

Makers are inventors, creators, engineers, students or grassroot innovators who enjoy play and exploration – but they can also be people who simply want to make the world a better place. And where better to innovate and experiment than in a city? Back in San Francisco in 2006, the Maker Movement arose out of the launch of MAKE: Magazine. Today, hundreds of thousands of people attend Maker Faire, the

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Surf, skate, liberate: Skateistan’s AtlasChart Top 5

Surf, skate, liberate: Skateistan’s AtlasChart Top 5

Still one of the most popular projects on the Atlas (it fills us – and so many others – with joy), Skateistan started as an Afghan NGO providing skateboarding and education for youth empowerment. Flip forward a decade and it’s a worldwide phenomenon – using the power of skate to liberate in Afghanistan, Cambodia and South Africa. Skateboarding is

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FutureHero Carlo Ratti: The Choral Architect

FutureHero Carlo Ratti: The Choral Architect

As more and more sensors, electronics and data radically transform the way we understand cities, Carlo Ratti makes dazzling interactive environments from the information we create – like our phone calls and the garbage we throw out – to create surprising visualisations of city life. Known as ‘The Choral Architect’, he senses the future of architecture as collaborative; with design intervening at the

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Atlas of the Future presents: The Futurenauts @ Byline Festival

Atlas of the Future presents: The Futurenauts @ Byline Festival

Is your future one full of pant-filling fear? Or are you an eternally glass half-full optimist? Do you lie awake at night in a cold sweat of trepidation about what tomorrow might bring? Or are you bouncing up and down on the bed in sleepless excitement of what’s to come? Is this the end of

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10 years of Fab Lab BCN: 10 projects that change everything

10 years of Fab Lab BCN: 10 projects that change everything

In March 2017, Fab Lab Barcelona celebrated ten years of innovation, participation, digital manufacturing, technology and creation with a big birthday fiesta at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia (IAAC). Over the last decade, the centre has helped people around the world to locally conceptualise, design, develop and fabricate, with a focus on truly world-changing open and accessible technologies. So

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Video ► Josh Tetrick: Cracking the future of food

Video ► Josh Tetrick: Cracking the future of food

A vegan mayo CEO wants to change the world by making the right thing easy and sexy: “The thing that, if you’re an evil person you still eat it, if you’re a poor person you still eat it, if you’re too busy and you don’t give a damn you still eat it.” And who are we

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AtlasNews: Solar Impulse material will protect refugees

AtlasNews: Solar Impulse material will protect refugees

As pilots Bertrand Piccard and Andrè Borschberg took Solar Impulse around the world for its record-breaking journey, the world-leading manufacturer of high-tech polymer materials behind it was working on another initiative involving the same technology that was used to construct the plane’s cockpit and protect the pilots from extreme temperatures. The structural strength and insulating properties of rigid polyurethane is well

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► Best Breakthrough Videos of 2016

► Best Breakthrough Videos of 2016

As we enter a new year, it’s time to look back at our recent videos for Project Breakthrough. Whether it’s the ex-American football player-turned-food saviour, the ex-Panamanian prisoner demanding transparency or the ex-travel writer fighting toxics, these nine FutureHeroes all have one major thing in common. They are all ex-ponential leaders. And they’re all disrupting entire industries – from food to

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14 ways you can make 2017 better

14 ways you can make 2017 better

As the world turns upside down and unhinged becomes the new normal, we want to provide some positivity from within the deep divisions of 2016. Take comfort. The world is better than you think. From Silicon Valley to Bulambuli Valley, social entrepreneurs are tackling the world’s most difficult problems. Technology is being democratised, access to education is causing global

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► Patrick Thomas: No Doubting Thomas

► Patrick Thomas: No Doubting Thomas

Patrick Thomas aims to make the world a better place with his “80-year startup”. Covestro products are everywhere in modern life – from our cars, smartphones and mattresses to refrigeration and thermal insulation… to Solar Impulse‘s lightweight cockpit. We met the CEO of the world-leading manufacturer of high-tech polymer materials in a café to discuss a smarter use of materials: “Having

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AtlasChart Top 5: Before the flood

AtlasChart Top 5: Before the flood

Climate change is real. Musk knows it, the Pope knows it and Obama knows it. With their new film, ‘Before the Flood’, Scorsese and DiCaprio want us all to acknowledge it. Increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases raises the planet’s temperature. Fact. These projects all help, because (as Leo puts it): “The science is clear, the

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FutureHero Ramez Naam: More than human

FutureHero Ramez Naam: More than human

The Cairo-born futurist, technologist and award-winning science fiction author on Elon Musk, how his best ideas come on hikes and why we’re all transhuman. Ramez Naam:  “Transhumanism is a weird word to most people. If you have a cell phone, you are already transhuman, as you have abilities above your human ancestors. If you have learned to

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AtlasChart Phil Dobson: Top 5 brain hacks

AtlasChart Phil Dobson: Top 5 brain hacks

As the founder of BrainWorkshops and author of The Brain Book, Phil Dobson helps you use your grey matter better – turning insights from neuroscience, psychology and mindfulness into simple techniques.  From brain-zapping to nootropics, take a trip through his top 5 Atlas projects.   1. The Brain Stimulator “If you’ve seen the film One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, the idea of

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Best of the Atlas 2016… so far

Best of the Atlas 2016… so far

This year might have had its dark times, but there are many reasons to get excited. From the Faroe Islands to Patagonia, 2016 has seen the Atlas travel far and wide to bring you projects that democratise the future. Thanks to your suggestions and innovations, over the last six months we’ve explored sex hacks and exposed fast fashion; shone a light on projects bringing

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Data to fight discrimination: AtlasChart Top 5

Data to fight discrimination: AtlasChart Top 5

Every day, sites like Netflix, Spotify and Flipboard tap into the power of data to provide recommendations that make life ‘easier’, or at least more entertaining. However, in many important areas such as global health, and in developing countries, basic information doesn’t exist. Often,  even where it does, it is considered biased or sexist. That’s why Melinda

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“The Internet was like a movie trailer. It tells you a lot about the main feature.”

“The Internet was like a movie trailer. It tells you a lot about the main feature.”

The Atlas of the Future team is humbled by the turnout of over 160 people who fought their way through Barcelona’s unusually rainy streets for last week’s AtlasEvent with Mark Stevenson – ‘The future and what to do about it‘. Catalonia’s leading newspaper La Vanguardia was also in attendance and chatted with the futurologist, who knows that the only way we can

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Soft Robotics Top 5: AtlasChart Cecilia Laschi

Soft Robotics Top 5: AtlasChart Cecilia Laschi

Nearly ten years ago, in the Tuscan seaside town of Livorno, a robotics researcher asked her father to catch her an octopus. Cecilia Laschi knew that a different bodyware was needed in robotics. The Professor of Biorobotics at Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies went on to create a rob-octopus as a model for a project researching the new generation

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7 ways to map optimism

7 ways to map optimism

Parag Khanna loves maps. Born in India, his parents took him everywhere on their travels while growing up in the United Arab Emirates, New York and Germany: “Whether finding maps in the glove compartment or flipping through the maps in airline seat pockets, maps always kept me busy,” the bestselling geopolitical author tells us. “They gave me a

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Here comes the sun: Solar Impulse touches down

Here comes the sun: Solar Impulse touches down

On Sunday, Solar Impulse 2 became the first solar powered plane to cross the Pacific. After completing the latest leg and landing in California, the pioneering team is on a mission to make the first around the world solar flight without any fuel. 2016 is a big year for solar. As instability around oil continues and

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Blockchain: A financial revolution for the ‘unbanked’

Blockchain: A financial revolution for the ‘unbanked’

    Blockchain technology is a real thing. But what is it?  A blockchain is a public ledger of all Bitcoin transactions that have ever been executed. It is constantly growing as ‘completed’ blocks are added to it with a new set of recordings. The blocks are added to the blockchain in a linear, chronological

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AtlasChart Helena Puig Larrauri: A peacetech Top 5

AtlasChart Helena Puig Larrauri: A peacetech Top 5

Spreading a message of “You can do it!” all around the world, peacebuilding practitioner Helena Puig Larrauri facilitates projects through technology – from filmmaking on the Sudan-South Sudan border to polling think tanks in Somalia. When it comes to tech, the Valenciana doesn’t want people to be scared to be amateurs: “Face the future. Believe you can do it and get to it.” Over a

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VR, kind robots and refugee tech

VR, kind robots and refugee tech

A lot of staring at screens happens at Mobile World Congress – whether tapping away at your own rapidly depreciating handset, ogling smarter ones, deciphering the agenda, or (in my case) simply trying to download the app that gets you a free coffee. ‘Mobile Is Everything’. The clue is in the slogan, but Barcelona’s MWC isn’t just about mobiles. Amid

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Are you the future? The Atlas is hiring!

Are you the future? The Atlas is hiring!

Atlas of the Future is looking for a dynamic and results-driven Community Manager based in Barcelona to develop and execute an exciting social media strategy. We map innovative, future-focused, socially impactful projects and people around the world and our mission is to ‘democratise the future’. This means making sure developments are understandable and entertaining – not

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Mesh networks: A parallel internet

Mesh networks: A parallel internet

Connectivity has been top of the agenda at Mobile World Congress this year and Facebook’s new project, announced at the Congress, aims to bring millions more people online. While Mark Zuckerberg, Richard Branson and Elon Musk might be scrambling to connect the world using balloons, drones and satellites, people living in underserved areas are already building their own networks without the help

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The Big Short: Housing without debt

The Big Short: Housing without debt

This week WikiHouse co-founder and FutureHero Alastair Parvin went to the cinema to see The Big Short (2015), Hollywood’s take on the real life traders who discovered that the housing loans holding up most of the economy were high risk – which led to the collapse of the US housing market and ensuing global recession of 2007-2009. The witty, depressing and

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Happy New Elements!

Happy New Elements!

Scientists in Japan, Russia and the US are celebrating 2016 by adding four new elements to the periodic table, finally completing its seventh row – and rendering science textbooks and the periodic table song out of date instantly.   Currently bearing placeholder names, the super-heavy elements will be officially named by the teams that discovered them in the coming months. Element

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Best of the Atlas 2015

Best of the Atlas 2015

From a Noah’s Ark of seeds and American Idol for rural farmers to 3D printing prosthetics in conflict zones and igloo orphanages on skis, this year has seen hundreds of projects mapped on the Atlas from Syria to the North Pole. We’re celebrating the end of 2015 and looking to the future by ranking our favourite 16.  So get your

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AtlasChart Rebecca Hosking: She’s no sheep

AtlasChart Rebecca Hosking: She’s no sheep

The village farmer and holistic grazer’s top 5 ways to regenerate agriculture – from mushroom-related technologies to the Noah’s Ark of seeds near the North Pole.   1. Soil Food Web Dr Elaine Ingham is leading the way in teaching farmers across the world in understanding their soil biology. This enables farmers to increase their productivity

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FutureHero Samantha Storr: The heroine of virtual reality

FutureHero Samantha Storr: The heroine of virtual reality

Samantha Storr keeps a low profile, but is very much the woman behind top directors Terry Gilliam, Chris Milk, Spike Jonze and Robert Redford. We chatted to the VP and Executive Producer of experience studio Here Be Dragons about the evolution of virtual reality for good, sharing immersive documentaries with world leaders and collaborating with the United Nations.

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AtlasChart Peter Crnokrak: A trip through data

AtlasChart Peter Crnokrak: A trip through data

The Croatian-born London-based computational artist – who works with 3D visualisation systems for a post-data world – takes us on a journey through his top 5 Atlas projects, from the sounds of Detroit to the noises emerging from the Vatican…   1. World Values Survey The WVS is a comprehensive questionnaire administered by a global

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AtlasChart Camila Achutti: From São Paulo to Buenos Aires in 5 tech steps

AtlasChart Camila Achutti: From São Paulo to Buenos Aires in 5 tech steps

The rising tech star and software engineer behind Mulheres na Computação (Women in Computing) maps her top 5 Atlas projects – from the favelas in Brazil to the streets of Argentina.   1. Chega de fiu fiu Sexual harassment in public spaces is pretty common here in Brazil. This is a nationwide campaign against it. Lots of people think

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FutureHero Alastair Parvin: Property, plywood and power

FutureHero Alastair Parvin: Property, plywood and power

The lead founder behind the revolutionary WikiHouse – the digitally manufactured building system that anyone can download and make – on solving the housing crisis, YouTube kittens and why he wants to control time… Alastair Parvin: “Pulp’s ‘Mis-Shapes‘ is a song that I love. I studied Architecture at the University of Sheffield, so Jarvis Cocker was

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Postcard from: The London heatwave

Postcard from: The London heatwave

As NASA’s mission passed Pluto last week, I undertook my own flyby of London to meet up with Atlas of the Future co-founder Cathy Runciman and author, entrepreneur, futurist and sometime comedian Mark Stevenson. Setting out to answer ‘What’s next?’, the curious author’s An Optimist’s Tour of the Future rocketed up the book charts in 2011 (and can now be read in

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Who does the future belong to?

In a conversation with a representative of Barcelona’s brand new city government, they call our Atlas into question, arguing that ‘people who work on the future often try to resolve contradictions within the capitalist system, and so they perpetuate inequality.’ The words hit home, and I get the feeling that it’s going to be difficult for us

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AtlasChart Alastair Parvin: The ‘accidental’ design economist’s Top 5

AtlasChart Alastair Parvin: The ‘accidental’ design economist’s Top 5

As co-founder of the open source building system WikiHouse, Alastair Parvin sees democracy as a design blueprint, has never shied away from provocation and likes people who are trying to be useful or doing seriously disruptive stuff. Take a journey through his favourite Atlas projects.   1. Ethereum This super-interesting project is looking at how you can use the

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Hello world: FutureHeroes, virtual reality and the Pope

Hello world: FutureHeroes, virtual reality and the Pope

I’m thrilled to introduce myself as editor-in-chief of Atlas of the Future, the new international Barcelona-London venture from Oriol Soler, Cathy Runciman and Arnau Grinyó. Launching September, this will provide a home and hangout for all those committed to long-term thinking, and take you on a journey through the technology and advances shaping our world in every way

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