In May, let's play with the future - Generocity Philly

Purpose

May 6, 2021 3:35 pm

In May, let’s play with the future

This month's editorial calendar topic focuses on civic innovation, community tech, and the technocultural practices that celebrate Blackness, embrace advancement and empower communities. In other words, Philafuturism!

(Graphic from photos by Mike Haupt on Unsplash.com and Artem Podrez on Pexels.com)

We have the talent. We have the tech. We even have a roadmap to make Philly a smart city. But do we have the radical imagination to take us into a great and equitable future?

You know we do, because we’ve brought you stories of Philly trailblazers in the past.

There’s cultural economist Dr. Jamie Bracey-Green, whose Think and Grow Farm uses agricultural technology and growing techniques honed in the legal compliant cannabis business and opens the future to the West Philly neighborhood it is sited in. “We have an actual, literal farm inside a shipping container growing food to show our folk the technology,” Bracey-Green told Generocity freelancer Bobbi Booker. “And I think, again, the technology, the low tech, high tech part of it is easily accessible to [Black] folks. Anybody can do this, and it’s an entrepreneurial opportunity.”

Then there’s Community Legal Services’ managing attorney of housing policy, Rasheeda Phillips, whose Black Quantum Futurism Collective collected and preserved the oral histories and cultural patrimony of the community members of North Philadelphia’s Sharswood-Blumberg neighborhood for future generations. Or filmmaker M. Asli Dukan, whose film, Resistance: the battle for Philadelphia asks “What would happen if the government privatized all social services? How do you resist when your opponent is the system?” And Frank Lee, who turned a 7-story building as a sounding board for community voices.

This month, in stories branded “Philafuturism, civic innovation and tactical community tech,” we expect to share new stories about projects that fuse futuristic thinking with Philly tradition; reflections on what Philadelphia will be in the future and the culturally distinct tech approaches we can take to get there; profiles of nonprofits and impact leaders whose vision of the Philadelphia of the future is shaped by those who are not traditionally advantaged by technology.

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We want to highlight the stories of Philly’s radical future worldbuilders — be they plying the tech of health care, philanthropy and impact investing, the arts, education or the architecture of our civic life.

And we haven’t even touched on what VR or augmented reality can fit into our Philafuturism…

Are you an someone we should talk to, or do you know of someone we should reach out to? Is there a project we need to know about? Want to write a first-person guest post about your Philafuturism — or to share the resources you think can better define the term? Let us know (and don’t forget to type “Philafuturism” in the subject line):

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P.S. If you are into VR/AR, check out Philly Tech Week 2021‘s virtual reality kickoff event tomorrow (May 7 @ 4 – 5 pm).

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