Webinar – Futures, Design, and Global Security

You are invited to a Webinar Conversation with Dr Elizabeth Keller, Professor Tom Weis and Professor Charlie Cannon on the subject of Futures, Design, and Global Security.
The increasingly complex and rapidly changing global security environment requires leaders and institutions to anticipate, adapt to, and prepare for a range of potential futures. In 2019 a small team from Sandia National Laboratories and the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) developed and facilitated SIFT (Strategic Implications of Future Trends), an exercise that enables participants to think creatively and collectively about the strategic implications of emerging global dynamics. The exercise is designed to:

  • Help participants explore how emerging trends might intersect with and amplify one another
  • Support reflection on how the intersection of trends might affect organizational strategic priorities
  • Enable participants to imagine new opportunities for anticipating and adapting to changing circumstances

Elizabeth J. Kistin Keller, PhD
Elizabeth Kistin Keller leads the Strategic Futures Program at Sandia National Laboratories. In this role she enables leaders to better anticipate and adapt to changing global security and organizational dynamics through strategic foresight, systems analysis, and decision support. Born and raised in Albuquerque, Elizabeth received her bachelor’s degree in political science and Latin American Studies as a Morehead-Cain Scholar at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and her master’s and PhD in International Development Studies (a combination of anthropology, economics, and political science) as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University. Before joining Sandia National Laboratories, Elizabeth spent several years working on transboundary water conflict and cooperation in North America, Southern Africa and South and South East Asia.

Tom Weis
Tom Weis is an Associate Professor in the Industrial Design department at the Rhode Island School of Design. Weis works with a team of faculty to guide graduate students through their year-long thesis projects. His undergraduate courses include such topics as advanced prototyping, gun violence prevention, aquaponics and global security issues. His work has been featured in such places as the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, Time magazine’s Best Inventions of 2010 and Mass General Hospital’s Russell MD Museum of History and Innovation. Since 2015, Weis has explored how design and creativity might work to reduce nuclear threats. He has presented at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, The International Atomic Energy Agency and has led collaborative workshops between design students and cadets at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and with teams at Sandia National Laboratories.

Charlie Cannon
Charlie Cannon is a designer and educator focused on the contributions that design can make to addressing the wicked problems of our day. He is an Associate Professor at the Rhode Island School of Design and a Scholar in Residence at PopTech. At RISD, Charlie cofounded the Innovation Studio. The studio brings interdisciplinary collaboration, creative thinking, social innovation and research to bear on intractable problems ranging from climate change to community development, from social justice to civic infrastructure. The Innovation Studio operates as a laboratory for new ideas to shift the attention of the design disciplines toward complex, present-day concerns, and to involve the larger public in the search for their solutions. Research projects emerging from the Innovation Studio have been supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rhode Island Renewable Energy Fund, the RISD Research Foundation, and the National Science Foundation.


Wednesday, September 23, 2020


6:00 pm
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