by José M. Ramos
This essay was inspired by the possibility that futures studies methods, theories and frameworks could shed some light on science fiction, in particular contemporary science fiction cinema – to act as a window into contemporary culture. Much is written about our future from the vantage point of futures studies, from literature on megatrends to scenarios of the near and long term future. And still more is written about science fiction genre, which arguably grapples most with complex issues and social and technological transformation. And yet still more is narrated and imagined by science fiction about our futures – from space operas, to robotic soap dramas, dystopian noir, cautionary allegory, and psychohistory. But what is written about science fiction from the vantage point of futures studies? Could futures studies be used to shed light on science fiction, to interpret science fiction and derive insights about ourselves?