From November 13 at 6:00pm EST through November 14 at 11:59pm EST, Facing History will pioneer an online, global game for social change that will convene hundreds, even thousands of students, educators, and community members from around the world to imagine what a better future for society might look like in 2026.
We will challenge each other to radically reimagine the future of empathy and civic participation, taking people outside the bounds of daily modes of thinking. The experience encourages collaboration to build shared visions and meaningful conversation about what the future might provide for us all.
The game uses IFTF’s Foresight Engine™ platform, designed by world-renowned game designer Jane McGonigal. This is a powerful but easy-to-use gaming environment for imagining a variety of different futures. Participants in the experience use “cards” to play brief, twitter-length ideas. Players can expand upon one another’s cards to create “builds” as players debate, extend, and pose questions about other players ideas. The longer the chains, the richer the ideas—and the more points players win.
Why this topic?
Empathy is complicated. But in a world of differing opinions, experiences and perspectives, developing empathy may be at the heart of peace building and problem solving.
This game is designed to dive deeply into what empathy might look like in the future. We want to ask each other: if we could feel what others feel, how might the world be different? How would we respond differently to local and world events? Would we think differently about personal responsibility? By thinking critically about the future of empathy, we know we can become better prepared to act empathetically today.
This game is an experiment in imagining the future, to think about what’s possible. Why should we think about the future? We think about the future because to create something new, you have to be able to imagine how things can be different. The future is a place where anything is possible, so it allows us to be creative and innovative without limits. And by thinking about what is possible, we can make decisions today that could help impact both the direction the future takes and how we respond to it.
30 hours to make the future!
The 30-hour future-making event will consist of two key components:
1. THE ONLINE GAME
Face the Future: A Game About the Future of Empathy. For just 30 hours, from November 13–14, hundreds of players from across the country and around the world will join together for an online game and conversation to challenge their assumptions and imagine the new kinds of choices we will be making in the future. Join us at FaceTheFuture.org
2. COMMUNITY CONVERSATION
Presented by Facing History and Ourselves and The Allstate Foundation. Jane McGonigal, New York Times bestselling author, and world-renowned designer of games for social impact— including the one we will be playing—will be featured in a Community Conversation on the evening of Sunday, November 13. Tune in online or join us in person as she explores the power of futures thinking to start making history today.
Thank you to all of our partners!
The Allstate Foundation (Lead Sponsor)
Reach Higher (Lead Outreach Partner)
Twitter (Social Media Sponsor)
WBUR (Media Partner)
Game Outreach Partners
Better Make Room
Boston Resilient Cities
California International Studies Project
Children’s Museum Boston
Connected Learning TV
Constitutional Rights Foundation
Greater Good Science Center
GO Public Schools
Global Nomads Group
Hearts on Fire
Institute of Play
Japanese American National Museum
Let it Ripple
Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust
Literacy Design Collaborative
Museum of Tolerance
National Writing Project
NBC Education Nation
New Tech Network
Not In Our School
NY Schools Tech
Project Zero, Project Good
Skirball Cultural Center
The Billions Institute