An event meetup showcasing speakers and workshops on Speculative & Critical Design, Design Fiction, Strategy & Foresight

About Us

We are bringing people together to help the world imagine a better place to live.

Speculative Futures chapters are organized by The Design Futures Initiative (DFI), a nonprofit 501c3 organization based in San Francisco, CA. Our mission is to bring together designers, strategists, artists, scientists, and futurists to have a conversation about the ethical, cultural, environmental, political and economic impact of future products and services. It serves to answer the questions of what future we want and what are the implications of the choices we make today.


Board of Directors

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Phil Balagtas - President & Founder

Experience Design Director, McKinsey & Co

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Sarah Hendrix - M.Ed. - VP/Treasurer

DFI Global Operations

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Mary Lukanuski - Secretary

Sr Director Product Design, Zendesk

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Jack Wilkinson - Board Member

Sr Strategist, Jam3

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Adam Zeiner - Board Member

Interaction Designer, Design Institute for Health



Advisory Board


Luisa Ji - Meetups/Global Chapters

Co-Founder Nomadic Labs


Dana Martens - Marketing Strategy & NYC Chapter Lead

Director/UX Designer Teach for America

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Chris Livaudais - Nonprofit Advisory

Executive Director, IDSA


Andrés Valencia - Regional Advisor - Latin America

CEO Change Consulting


Our History


In April 2015, we launched our first meetup in San Francisco. We were fascinated with Speculative and Critical Design and wanted to create a platform where we could share work and methodologies. Over the years our events grew in size and popularity. Since it’s inception, we’ve welcomed over 4000 members worldwide, hosted hundreds of events, and workshops, and organized 3 conferences. Speculative Futures chapters exist in over 12 countries and we are growing every day.


Our vision is to expand our global community and further the discourse around Speculative Design and Foresight as strategies for responsible, ethical, and mindful design futures.

PRIMER 18Workshop


We hope to expand our methodologies and frameworks to continue to build upon our own design practice and share it beyond academia and corporations.


We wish to instate a new way of looking at our future together as one community, one family, inclusive of all industries and disciplines. 



Our conferences serve as annual gatherings to serve major regions across the world. We hope to expand these to every corner of the planet so that everyone can have access to this content and learning.


Beyond our events, we hope to continue developing more educational programs and offerings to reach out to more people and truly democratize, normalize and practicalize Futures Design Thinking. 


Who Supports Us


Since we were founded by designers, it’s primary audience is designers. However, our mission is to be inclusive of all parties (Futurists, Researchers, Strategists, Product Managers, Architects, Science Fiction writers/filmmakers, Scientists) who design and speculate about the future. Through a wide variety of futures-oriented content, we hope to inspire our attendees to feel empowered about changing the present and guiding our history toward futures we want.