Speculative Life


Speculative Life Cluster is speculative design research cluster at the intersection of art and the life sciences, architecture and design, and computational media.

Our research group is unique in Milieux Institute for Art, Technology and Culture at Concordia University in our emphasis on fostering science and technology studies, a focus on ecology and environment, our interest in scale and networks, and finally, our commitment to futurity and imagination as critical to design, art, and scholarship.

This cluster of artists, designers and scholars presents a rare opportunity to develop the systemic study and creation of emerging technologies with a focus on complexity and futurity. We engage with the entire ecology of technologies and foster creative ways to think about the future of the planetary scale transformations currently occurring as a result of human action and technical developments.

Our group aims to create a space where individuals working from molecular biology to large-scale technical, urban, and logistical infrastructures can share ideas and practices, and confront the complexities and challenges of living in a networked planet where the impact of new technologies is often sensed and felt not only locally, but globally.

Information for Prospective Students and Collaborators

Speculative Life is looking for graduate students with interest and expertise in the following areas:
Infrastructure and the environment (Kregg Hetherington, Orit Halpern, Sociology and Anthropology)

  • Eco and environmental design practices (Orit Halpern, Sociology and Anthropology,Martin Racine, Design and Computation Arts)
  • Speculative thinking for living on a damaged planet (Orit Halpern, Sociology and Anthropology)
  • Feminist and Science and Technology Studies (Bart Simon, Orit Halpern, Sociology and Anthropology)
  • Embodiment, performance, senses and sensing (Chris Salter, Design and Computation Arts, Erin Manning, Fine Arts, David Howes, Anthropology)
  • Bio art and artistic laboratory practices (Tagny Duff, Communication Studies)


Orit Halpern Associate Professor
Department of Sociology and Anthropology

Speculative Life’s membership is made up of students and faculty in the following departments:

Interested in joining Milieux? Apply to a Concordia graduate program. Once accepted, you may join Milieux by contacting the director of the cluster of your choice.