how we work

We are a teamplayer. We work with our clients and partners to maximize quality of results and quality of experience. As such, we invest highly in process design & facilitation, selection and development of tools for thought and action supportive of the goals of the project, communication and dissemination during and after projects etc.teamplayer

Exploring or envisioning the future generally starts with a thorough analysis of the terrain, i.e. the client and their environment. After all, it will be the changes that might take place in their biotope, which will eventually shape their future context and hence force them to change in one direction or the other in order to survive or increase success. A thorough understanding of the world(s) of which our client is part is a must for a successful futures exploration and/or visioning journey. We work hard to make the complexity of our client's reality insightful and manageable throughout the project through careful design.

perspectiveAlthough we pack a solid amount of knowledge about future developments and their possible impacts in-house and within the networks we operate, exploring and envisioning the future calls for more than "us delivering our knowledge and know-how to our clients". The future begs for an approach to take into account multiple perspectives (cf. multi-stakeholder), facilitate mutual learning and building bridges, to prepare ground and build capacity for the future vision to take root. Therefore the majority of our work is infused with interactive working sessions with our client and when required: with stakeholders in their future.  All of these sessions breathe the heads-in-hands-on atmosphere for which Pantopicon has become known.

Successful participatory futuring requires the right mind- and bodyspace. Therefore, as experienced atmosphere architects, we work with our client to spot inspiring locations and set the stage for our interactive sessions. 

The content we deliver and the tools and materials we use throughout our processes are designed to inspire, to motivate for action, to streamline the workflow effectively.

Our toolbox is inspired by state of the art methods and techniques stemming from a variety of fields, among which foresight, futures studies, systems analysis, scenario- & trendanalysis, integrated assessment, design research, experience design, design thinking, etc. 

inside our toolbox

The following are but a few examples of methods and techniques in our toolbox.

a day in the life of / personas

persona carsWho are your core stakeholders? How would a day in their life look like in the future? How would their course of action change from the way it is now? Through observation, interviews, mapping, roleplays, sketching etc. we help participants envision the possible impact of and changes brought about by the future. Part analytical, part communicative, yet always a powerful tool to help people feel their way around the future instead of describing it in abstract terms.

card sorting

When things start to get complex we need to get them out of our heads and onto the table. For ourselves and those with whom we communicate, card sorting offers a flexible (and memorable) way to give structure, gain insight into and talk about complex matters.

storyboarding

Placing people at the center is also knowing how to engage them. Stories can be told in a myriad of ways, through a manifold of media: e.g. live, in writing, through theater, through video, by means of drawings ... How could future experiences be different from today's? A wonderful way to get down to the nitty gritty detail are storyboards. They can be drawn up for anything ranging from how you buy things to the lifecycle of your product or how third parties could interact with you. You name it, you draw it! (yes, we can lend a hand)

futurewheels

futurewheelA low treshold brainstorming technique and visualization scheme to analyze possible consequences of future developments in a structured and insightful way.

video sketching

videosketchFictional newsbulletins, small storylines set in times ahead ... whether as a way to inspire, to sum up a multi-facetted future scenario in a minimum amount of time or to share a view of what might be, just as in pencil one can also sketch in video. A healthy dose of imagination, a chromakey screen and a pinch of acting is all one needs to set the future free. 

prototyping

In a world in which all things visual are so dominant, one tends to forget that rendering something tangible far and foremost has to do with touch. People gather around stories and things they can touch, things with which they can interact. Our environment is made out of touchy stuff and so will the future be, so let's get physical and shape up some future artifacts.

inspiration cards

inspiration cardsSometimes even the most creative minds get stuck and need a brainslap to get going again. Our inspiration cards have been carefully crafted to stimulate both lateral and analytical thinking aimed at the future. They serve many purposes, such as in exploring ingredients for alternative futures, in moving between the abstract and the concrete, in putting an image on nuance through metaphor, etc.

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