Climate change is on the tips of all our tongues—it’s become a dominant theme in popular culture and worked its way into everyday language. To what extent, though, have the young people who will inherit the effects of climate change reflected on what their world will look like if climate trends persist? Join us as the youth of today craft a vision of the planet 24 years from now…in the year 2040.
What is in2040
in2040 is the future of our planet imaged by young people. Our aim is to create a space in which students can discuss their vision of long-term effects of global climate change through posting, responding to, and discussing youth-created videos depicting the year 2040. We started with ten high school students to whom we posed the question: What will your life be like in the year 2040 in the context of global climate change? Together, they crafted a narrative of how their lives would be different in 2040 based on what they think will happen over the next 24 years. We did not say that climate patterns would necessarily persist nor did we suggest what the future might look like. [insert title of video] is their imagined future.
Who we are
in2040 is a collaboration between three teachers at the International Bilingual School of Provence in France, and the CEO of U.S.-based market research firm, Latitude. Ten students, ages 16-18, from a wide variety of nationalities, volunteered to participate in the project. The work was done outside of class time (although, if you can do it during class time, more power to you!).
Instead of asking students what they think about climate change, we thought it would have more of an emotional impact if we could provide a window into how youth perceive the fate of the world vis-à-vis climate change. Parents can see what world their children think they will inherit and youth can begin to think of whether depictions of 2040 match the world in which they want to live.
We also wanted to in2040 to be interactive and participatory, which is why chose to use Lumière—so that other groups of students could upload videos to which youth could respond and discuss. Additionally, we hoped that this unique approach to market research would allow environmental advocates, policy-makers, and educators to better understand and, subsequently, address young people’s hopes and concerns for the future.