Summer School 2021

Creating a desirable future


Abbas Jamie, engineer, futurist, design thinker, UCT Futures Think Tank, and Dr Fuad Udemansengineer

One cannot predict the future, but one can be part of creating a better future. Plans made in the ‘present’ are usually based on data from the ‘past’ for a ‘future’ that we have never visited.  Many of us have not been trained to think about the future and have been taught through a linear, predictive and outcome based education system. However, the world is very complex and thinking about the future therefore requires a much more systemic approach. Futures studies is a relatively new interdisciplinary field that attempts to gain a holistic or systemic view of the world we live in. This course is an introduction to futures studies, complexity and design thinking and blends them together to unlock an innovation mindset that is human-centric. The learning fosters exploration, experimentation and imagination to co-create a desirable future.



  1. Understanding futures and the importance of creativity Abbas Jamie 
  2. Managing chaos and complexity Dr Fuad Udemans

This course will be offered on the Microsoft Teams platform. Participants will be sent a link.


Recommended reading

Brown, T. 2009. Change by design: How design thinking transforms organizations and inspires innovation. New York: Harper Collins Publishers.

Degraff, J. and Degraff, S. 2017. The innovation code: the creative power of constructive conflict. Oakland, California: Berret-Koehler Publishers Inc.

Lissack, M.R. 2000. ‘Complexity: the science, its vocabulary and its relationships to organisations’. Emergence, 1(1), pp. 110–26. 

Gharajedaghi, J. 2011.  Systems Thinking:  Managing Chaos and Complexity:  A Platform for Designing Business Architecture. Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann (Elsevier).

Date: Monday 25–Tuesday 26 January
Time: 1.00 pm