Introduction: new media and the imagination of the future
journal contributionposted on 12.11.2015, 15:03 authored by Simone Natale
Predictions and forecasts play a paramount role in contemporary societies. The capacity to forecast the future is often presented as one of the main responsibilities for everyone who works with media and technology, as well as in other fields. Financial companies ground their advertising campaigns and public image on their supposed capacity to grasp the future; politicians promise to have a clear vision of the challenges for the future; academic scholars (e.g. Spigel, 2005), journalists, and bloggers struggle to foresee new trends and directions. In fields such as international politics and political economy, the growing demand for anticipatory knowledge has dramatically changed the agenda and the practices of consultancy companies and think tanks (Colonomos, 2012). Across the natural and social sciences, scientific hypotheses are weighted on their predictive power. Also, new forecasting technologies and cultural techniques that provide predictions based on statistical patterns find applications in industry, planning, and administration. Think, for instance, of Amazon’s anticipatory shipping, or the algorithms that predict user behaviours in Google ads.
- Social Sciences
- Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies