Skip to content.
HEA logo ADM logo

2050 and all that...

Birmingham Institute of Art and Design, Birmingham
10 December 2010 12:00-17:00

The Design Research Society Annual Symposium 2010 ‘2050 and all that...’ will explore design opportunities for a sustainable future.

2050 has been established in the public mind, rightly or wrongly, as a pivotal year. Many studies have focused on challenges and opportunities arising in the period leading to 2050 and the promise of a sustainable future. On the other hand, some believe that the world will end.

If humankind is to survive, we face considerable changes to our lifestyles over the next forty or so years. With population growth and depletion of natural resources etc. coinciding in 2050, there are threats to national economies, food and water security, and potential for social unrest. Cradle to cradle approaches to design force us to radically rethink our approaches to the built environment, the currently wasteful nature of production, and the ways in which we design and promote designed environments, products and services.

Our future can sound very gloomy. We certainly face some big challenges, but the lead up to 2050 also offers great opportunities for designers to change things for the better. We have created the desires that drive present consumption, and we have the capacity to change those desires for the better.

This symposium will gaze at the future and how designers might shape it. The event brings together a small number of leading speakers with diverse perspectives who are optimistically seeking new approaches. There will be plenty of time for discussion.


  • John Thackara is well known as a leading thinker in the area of sustainable lifestyles
  • Tracy Bhamra is Professor of Sustainable design at Loughborough University UK.
  • Emma Dewberry is Senior Lecturer in Design for Sustainability in the Design Group at the Open University.
  • Tim Cooper is Professor of Sustainable Design and Consumption at Nottingham Trent University.

The symposium is open to all, but a place must be booked in advance.

Please go to the website for more information.


< back