NGI Salon @4YFN

The benefits of unplugging

The NGI Salon / Millennials workshop Past, present and future of (y)our internet was held as an offsite event to Four Years From Now (4YFN) last week. NGI had a strong presence at 4YFN overall. The NGI Salon workshop was hosted at the Caixa Forum in Barcelona, a wonderful venue for unwinding from 4YFN and for collective reflection.

About 12 participants from over four continents joined in the workshop, part of a series to build a Millennials’ narrative of a sustainable and human-centric digital futures, as well as a platform for personal reflection and collective healing.

The workshop was moderated by Marta Arniani (futuribile/curating futures) and Jennifer Veldman (DataWatchers). It explored the notion of care and taking care (of oneself and of other people) in the digital age.

Taking care in the digital age

Authentic human relationships, hanging out with friends, family, taking care of the elderly formed the thread that held the discussion together.  Digital technology should therefore support these relationships, instead of trying to be the interface in between.

Indeed, even though we have much more means to take care of ourselves with digital technology, actually unplugging emerged strongly as the way Millennials try to stay healthy.

Sometimes online information, such as looking up recipes for healthy or diverse food, or digital supports, like starting meditation with a guidance app, can help. However, the way these are considered valuable is to enhance offline experience such as eating and meditating.

Even though we have more ways of connecting, new ways of communication, the physical presence is something that participants valued above all other connection.

By Marta Arniani