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HomeNext week on June 7-8, we will be running an on-line game called Pounamu using the Institute for the Future’s foresight engine.  The engine brings a large community of people to come together to investigate, explore and discuss a future scenario.  Pounamu invokes a future New Zealand that is trying to make its way in the world by drawing on its wits.  Not so different to today, maybe, except that the growth of the web information has become much more accessible, while the skills that it takes to turn this torrent of information into useful knowledge have become more highly prized.  In Pounamu, New Zealand must learn to export knowledge not nature.

We will be running the game in conjunction with the Transit of Venus Forum that take will take place in Gisborne at the same time.  While the Forum will be webcast live, the game will allow a much broader cross-section of New Zealanders to participate actively in the discussion of New Zealand’s future.

I am really looking forward to it – a few of us had a blast last week putting the game through its paces.  My forecast that everyone would be sharing their DNA profile on facebook was hotly debated.  The pros: by sharing your DNA data openly, you’ll be helping researchers understand health and disease, and maybe you’ll get advice on how to change your lifestyle to avoid triggering a genetic predisposition to a disease.  The cons: what will your health insurance provider do with that information? And some people didn’t want to know whether they had a genetic condition, even if this knowledge meant they could do something about it.

What do you think? Tell us by registering and then playing Pounamu on June 7-8!