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Garreau comments on future of census

April 16, 2012

Joel Garreau, ASU Lincoln Professor of Law, Culture and Values, was quoted in an April 15 NPR article, “The 2080 Census: The World As We (Don’t) Know It,” by reporter Linton Weeks.

The article reported on the information census takers will be soliciting in 2080.

“I don’t do predictions,” Garreau said. “I do scenarios, because I don’t have a crystal ball and I don’t know anyone who does, and predictions inevitably turn out to be lame.”

Garreau said the answer to what kind of questions might appear on the 2080 census form is complicated.

“If you want to write science fiction, recall that it always says more about the present than the future,” Garreau said. “George Orwell’s futuristic novel 1984 was so-called because it was written in 1948.”

To read the article, click here.

Garreau, who joined the College in 2010, is a student of culture, values and change. Professor Garreau is the author of "Radical Evolution: The Promise and Peril of Enhancing Our Minds, Our Bodies, and What It Means to Be Human," a look at the hinge in history at which we have arrived.  As director of The Prevail Project, he is building upon a "Radical Evolution" concept that the Prevail Scenario – the humanistic possibility that we can control and direct this future – might be encouraged.