Archive of the Strategy Cell: Edinburgh 2011

Over 10 days at the Edinburgh Festival the strategy cell sat alongside our emergency cell in which performances of 3rd Ring Out took place. Whilst the emergency rehearsed for a climate-changed future in crisis, in the STRATEGY CELL, we imagined how we could avoid that future and how we would like to live instead. On the table there was a map of Edinburgh.

Together, our audiences, visitors to the strategy cell, the 3rd Ring Out team and 7 especially selected local artists worked together to explore alternative futures for Edinburgh. Some artists responded to the stories by creating the story strands, others responded with images, further stories, or other related materials.

The artists were:

Michael Bowdidge

Harry Giles

Paul Henry

Alexa Ispas

Sebastien Lawson

Xana Marwick

Riel Noir

How did it work?

The public were asked to come up with ideas for how to change Edinburgh in response to a climate-changed future. We offered a number of themes for inspiration – food, water, energy, transport, waste.

These were posted in a box and then selected for placing on the wall of the strategy cell. Please click here for examples of the suggestions that people made. Once up on the wall they were rated by other members of the public and our audiences, using red stickers.

Click here to see a range of the ideas suggested.

The ideas with the most stickers were voted on, three at a time, using our especially designed voting system (similar to the one used in the emergency cell for the performance simulation). The most popular ideas were then implemented on the map.

These ideas then became the catalyst for responses by artists. How would these strategies change Edinburgh? What would happen as a result of these changes? What would this future look like?

2013: Energy: All new buildings to have solar panels and energy saving devices.

2014: Energy: Edinburgh votes to build giant solar parasols.

2012: Transport: Prince’s Street turned into a pedestrian area.

2013: Food: Cultivating and agricultural skills as part of the curriculum.

2012: Energy: Carbon Tax; New climate levy introduced. Outraged energy sector, ill-prepared, sees record losses.

2016: Architecture: Empty Council property reclaimed – 80% of empty ECC property converted to social housing to aid flooding relocation.

2014: Food: Urban Garden Reclamation Act – All currently unoccupied green space, brownfield and rooftops made available to expanded allotment schemes.

2018: Landscape: Call for response to impending food shortage.

2018: Social: All gym bikes now linked to generators.

2015: Education: Everyone to give two hours a month towards eco-community projects, i.e. eco-community service.

2012: Security: Packaging protests. Beginning in Edinburgh, a wave of protests in which customers remove packaging in stores spreads across the UK. Supermarkets increase security budget – minor scandal when forced removal gives a pensioner a heart attack.

To see the future of Edinburgh as imagined by the artists please click on one of the above. In each strand there are links that will take you to other related story strands, and to images created by the artists in response to these stories.
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