Fon2Future A Speculative Vision into an Eco-Sustainable Future

Scroll for more information

The climate crisis is imminent and requires us to restructure our society on all levels." We all know that. We know that we are the last generation with the chance to have a meaningful impact on that scenario, we know that the world is gonna burn to a crisp if we don't do it. But... Even if we wanted to do it, how exactly do we get there? And what does this 'there' even look like? Enter the Fon2Future project. This pop-up phone booth will appear in your neighbourhood and offer you the unique chance to have a phone call with your neighbours in the future. In this version of 2050, eco-social sustainability has not only been realized, but it has also become the new norm that all people are now participants in. Fon2Future offers you the opportunity to learn about what we can do to prevent the climate crisis and what changes that entails to the individual through unique, non-linear conversation-based storytelling. 7 different personas will grant you unique insight into different systemic elements such as new democratic decision-making processes, transport, agriculture, buildings, education, and much more, all through the individual's lens on a real-life example that is familiar to you as the participant. This means that this time, you get to learn about it based on your local environment while getting to see how your future neighbour interprets these changes through jokes, wondering and mourning. They will also grant you useful tips and suggestions on how you can empower yourself and your community to become active participants in creating this or any other preferable vision to climate breakdown. We can do this, so let's get building.

Watch Introducing: Fon2Future here.

Presenting Fon2Future: Lucille Hein MA Degree Show


Defining the issue 

The climate crisis is a known issue for over 60 years. Large-scale protests against ecological breakdown have existed for more than a decade. And yet humanity emits more greenhouse gases than ever before. How can this be? We know the issue, we know the effects, and we don't even lack the knowledge or means to implement alternatives. Somehow the world seems stuck in inaction. This project attempts to rethink the framing of climate communication and to develop an optimistic vision of pathways towards sustainable futures. 


Analyzing the present 

When breaking down this ambitious task, three core questions emerge that need to be answered to progress with the project. 

1. "what does an eco-socially sustainable future look like?" 

2. "what does successful climate communication look like?" 

3. "how does the public knowledge differ from what is relevant, and what prevents them from educating themselves?" 

To answer these, I gathered data from scientific sources such as the IPCC and real-life best practices like indigenous permaculture. 

I then combined the insights with findings from interviews with climate communicators of relevant reach. 

Lastly, I sent out a questionnaire to everyday people of Cologne, enquiring about their knowledge of eco-social sustainability. 

Manifesting futures 

The Idea for Fon2Future emerged during co-design and worldbuilding workshops with local climate activists. Fon2Future functions as a link between our time, and an eco-socially sustainable future version of Cologne set in 2050. At first, I built a text-based HTML prototype as proof of concept, with two fully scripted dialogue trees forming personas that participants could interact with. After acquiring feedback, I optimized the wording and pathways within the interaction. I then recorded two friends acting as the personas on video. Using Unity, I developed an interactive simulation of a video call with these personas. Finally, I built a physical phone booth for the digital interaction out of plywood leftovers at LCC's 3D Workshop. The completed project was first displayed at the MA Design for Social Innovation and Sustainable Futures Graduate Show in December 2021.


Lucille is an interdisciplinary UX and media designer, focusing on concept development, prototyping and design research. Her work combines digital and analogous media, using interaction as a way of experimental storytelling and communication. 

To see more of Lucille Hein’s work visit:
Dark Mode

This will switch the site between ‘mostly white’ to ‘mostly black’. Turning this on reduces energy consumption.

Simplified Layout

This switch will disable non-essential code and remove javascript animations, helping to reduce C02 consumption during your visit.

Bitmap images

All images will appear as low res bitmaps by default to help reduce energy consumption during your visit. Switch this off to view images in hi-res.

Type size

Use the plus/minus to increase/decrease the size of the text. This has no effect on energy use.