Looking ahead and inspiring curiosity through R&D

ELSE Futures

Over the past 4 years, our R&D initiative has created the space for us to explore emerging technologies and experiential trends so that we develop capability before our clients and future clients need it.

Our ambition is to launch products and provocations into the world that change things for the better and solve a problem we’ve observed.

Our R&D programme focusses on three main areas — a product idea, a challenge of our time and speculative design.

Solving for now

A Product

Exploring product ideas around a given theme, ranging from group finance to digital legacy to shared musical playlists. These product ideas are often things we’ve observed over the years, we’ll work on them over a 6 month period in order to launch something into the world.

Solving for soon

A Challenge

Responding to a challenge of our time and applying the theories of behavioural science to help solve them. These projects run as missions over 3 months and can develop a product as a result. Currently, we are exploring how we can make the theme of climate change more tangible for people.

Exploring the future

Speculative Design

Speculative design looks at the future impact of technology and questions the ethics of the design decisions we are making today. Our first project looks at AI’s impact on education and is available to see as a write-up below.

Redefining loyalty for today’s energy customers

The Big Switch Off

As inflation reaches a 40-year record high, this report, authored by strategic design consultancy ELSE, leverages insights from over 1,500 bill payers based in the United Kingdom to reveal what people want – and how they feel – about their energy providers.

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the story so far

Creating the culture of R&D

Over the last year at ELSE, we’ve been cultivating our own R&D projects by setting aside time to allow everyone at ELSE to experiment, outside of their client work.

Read more about R&D at ELSE

Approaching the design of a Covid-19 Track & Trace app

Perfection or participation?

The following piece is the output of an ELSE R&D project, investigating the challenge of fostering participation in a Track and Trace system.

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During this pandemic, we’d do well to be mindful of what we spread.

The pandemic and the spread of contagious messaging

Our R&D exploration investigates the virulent spread of fear, uncertainty and doubt during the pandemic.

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Featured project

A.I and the future of education

Through this speculative design project, we take a look at how A.I. has the potential to transform the future landscape of education. From drivers and catalysts of change, to hyper-personalised curriculums and A.I teaching assistants – let’s step into the classroom of 2049.

Read the full story

Want to know more about R&D?

If you’d like to get involved or hear more about ELSE Futures, please get in touch.

hello future