The Phenomena Method is a participatory approach* that relies on the sharing and emergence of positive values for designing meaningful futures. It was conceived by Ruth Guerra, a futures designer and human experience researcher.
The method first took shape as a participatory tool and workshop for planetary care that was exhibited at institutions in Europe and South America. Rather than using dystopian scenarios as catalysts for change, diverse teams were asked to imagine desirable futures together and collaborate on designs to sustain that vision.
Phenomena has since been adapted as an innovations method across industries like education and social entrepreneurship. It offers an alternative to traditional “solutions-driven” models by leading with values, instead of problems, and seeks to democratize changemaking through radical collective impact.
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*As an organization, we value the interoperability of "co-design," "participatory design," "co-creation," and "changemaking." We understand there are nuances among these concepts, and we believe in applying aspects of each of them, when needed, to create an effective design system.