The ‘Narrativium’ Projects

It was Terry Pratchett who coined the term ‘narrativium’ as the element upon which we humans run.

It was New Optimist Jack Cohen who describes us humans as pan narrans, the storytelling ape rather than homo sapiens. (And Jack and mathematician Ian Stewart joined forces with Terry Pratchett to write the Science of Discworld series, and thereby became Honorary Wizards of the Unseen University with due ceremony at the University of Warwick.)

The facts and stats of science have little easy appeal for many people. Yet, as Terry so memorably illustrates, all humans like a good story.

That’s why Kate Cooper set up the Narrativium Projects in early 2014 to ‘translate’ the scientist and expert input within the Birmingham 2050 Scenarios Project (which was about possible food futures for the city).

We’re adding to these projects with, to date:

We’ll shortly be announcing a fine art commission, news about a graffit project (legal, sure) and the development of photography platform.

And the list continues:

  • Archetypal households: A data research and writing project led by Suriya Roberts-Grey
  • Action Research: Birmingham as a laboratory, a programme of projects to find out how the city can contribute to global food resilience and security, as well as our local needs. (Some of these projects are ‘sapiens’ evidence based stuff, some ‘narrativium’ to amplify the programme impact.)
  • City of 1000 meals: An NCASS partnership.
    We’re designing the means by which we can record info about 1000 meals prepared and eaten in good company across the city.
  • The Game: The Game (working title: Nine Meals) is designed to enable decision-makers better understand the threats facing our food supplies, and how to respond to them.

note: Kate transferred the IP from the CIC that produced the food crime musical to the Birmingham Food Council CIC in 2018.This IP also included: