Our speaker this month will be Jake Dunagan. Jake Dunagan is an experiential futurist, governance designer, and teacher. He is Director of Design Futures at verynice.co—a design, innovation, and foresight consultancy that gives half of its work away for free to non-profits, and adjunct professor of Strategic Foresight in the Design Strategy MBA and Strategic Foresight MBA programs at the California College of Arts (CCA). Jake’s work has been centered on the concept of social invention and novel methods to help individuals, organizations, and governing institutions re-imagine and re-invent their futures. He has worked with governments, businesses, foundations, and non-profits around the world. Recent research projects include the future of social entrepreneurship, applied embodied cognition, judicial foresight, kid’s technologies, intellectual property law, and the future of work. He has created tools to increase citizen participation in political system design, as well as designed visual media, interactive experiences, and public engagement projects that inject alternative visions of the future into the present.

Jake is going to be talking to us about the future of governance. We are nearing consensus that our systems of government are partially or fully broken. And yet, most mainstream ideas for how to fix government are regressive, incoherent, or timidly incremental. What would a truly novel form of governance look like? What problems would it solve, or not? How might it work? Who would benefit? Who would suffer? Jake Dunagan, Director of Design Futures at verynice.co and former director of the Governance Futures Lab at the Institute for the Future, has been leading efforts to empower a new generation of social inventors to re-design governance for the 21st Century. Combining a short lecture with participatory exercises, Jake will introduce the basic tenets of political system design and facilitate a group creation of a “mission statement” for a Free State of Austin.