New perspectives: speculative prototyping for the climate crisis

The climate crisis is now the greatest challenge we've ever faced as a species. Change takes 30 years: by 2050 we will know whether humanity has succeeded in mitigating the risks of climate catastrophe – or failed to act in time.

Hosted by Glasgow School of Art Innovation School in the beautiful and remote location of the Altyre Estate near Forres, 160 students spent 2 weeks exploring new approaches to designing for humanity and the natural world of our near future.

Workshop by:

With students from:

Two future worlds...


Improvements in planetary health have occured at the expense of societal freedoms: restrictive living conditions, conflict and authoritarian regimes prevail.

Humans Inc

This broadly represents humanity's current trajectory: a world in which societal conditions advance, but to the detriment of planetary health.

Thanks to ARUP for providing the excellent research behind the worlds.

5 lenses...

Interconnected world views

How might we better understand our place in the wider web of life?

Mortality consciousness

How might we engage with death in a healthy and positive way?

Multigenerational emotions

How might we connect emotionally across multiple generations?

Legacy stance

How might we find the motivation to leave a positive legacy?

Deep time

How might deep time help us rediscover our place in the universe?

Thanks to The Long Time Project for providing the lenses that inspired this project.

160 students, 28 projects, 4 days.

AIRBNBEES ©® by Basking Sharks 2.pdf
red squirrel 2 plz download! Presentation S2
Stand-alone deck - Highland Cow 1
Fìor Presentation
Golden Eagle 1 Final
Red Grouse 2(副本)
Capercaillie 1_ Boar farm
Final Presentation scottish wildcat 1
highland stag 1 Deck
Stand-alone deck - Red Deer 1
Stand-alone deck - Highland Cow 2
Osprey1 document
Love House for birds - Final presentation - v2
Stand-alone deck - Basking Shark 1
RedGrouse1_Fish&Chips_Standalone (1)
Orkney Vole 2 - standalone
experience video.mp4
Golden Eagle 2 Stand Alone Deck
Pine Marten 2
Stand-alone deck - Shetland Pony 2
Stand-alone deck - Ptarmigan2
Salgro .pdf

Want to learn more?

Workshop team

Joe Rickerby

Nord Projects

Ben Pawle

Nord Projects

Alice Gunn

Freelance Creative

Eva Kozanecka

Google AI

Mike Colville

Nord Projects

Nord Projects response to the brief 👇

Currently, banks use gold to underpin our economy, but given our reliance on nature and the gravity of the climate crisis, what if we instead valued nature more than gold: using it to underpin our economy?

We imagine utilising existing mapping tools like Google Maps and Street view, combining these with off-road AI sensing drones and a network of AIoT embedded devices, to monitor environmental conditions around the world.

Our prototype ‘MorayCoin’ uses tiny AI sensors that detect birdsong, animal sightings, monitor air quality and plant life, and communicate this across a distributed network, to set the value of local currencies. People can invest in MorayCoin, and the value rises and falls with biodiversity and environmental health of each currency district.

1. AI sensors monitor the local environment (laptop as preview of what the sensor perceives)

2. Environment health underpins local currency 'MorayCoin'

3. Absence of nature, value ↘︎

4. Nature presence and health, value ↗︎

This poses interesting 'ripple effect' questions like:

What if nature got a share of the profits - could an AI work together with nature - trying different interventions to try to increase biodiversity and site value? Biological intelligence meets Machine Intelligence!

How does society deal with a shift in wealth from urban to rural? How can we prevent people gaming the system? How can we ensure humans are also valued in this system?

The MorayCoin prototype uses Google's Coral dev board with Logitech webcam running the iNAT Plants model which generates data to drive a eWallet companion app