If you are thinking of starting a project at FoAM, here's a list of questions to ask yourself…

Your motivation

  • Are you personally committed to initiating, engaging in and realising this project?
  • Are you keen to collaborate with other people in one or more of the FoAM studios?
  • How would this project benefit from being part of the FoAM network?
  • Why should this project be developed by “a lab connecting art, science, nature and everyday life”?
  • How does the project connect to FoAM's motto “grow your own worlds”?

Research Streams

How does your project contribute to one or more of the following research streams:

  • environment: climate change, climate futures, environmental literacy, eco-technologies, panpsychism…?
  • culture and society: social development, social inequality, (organisational) transitions, futures literacy, uncertainty…?
  • experience: embodiment, experiential learning, experience design, rituals and celebrations, poethics…?


Can you answer YES to more than one of these questions - the more positive answers you get, the more 'foamy' the project is likely to be:

  • does it develop, support or engage different modes of inquiry (e.g. theoretical research, creative practice, participatory experiences…)? if it has a single mode of inquiry, is it complementary with other FoAM projects or practices?
  • does it approach complex issues from different perspectives?
  • does it encourage 'unholy alliances' (connections between unexpected fields, cultures and worldviews)?
  • can it function as a connector, or a 'trojan horse' - between disciplines, people, philosophies…?
  • will it engage people from a field that is unknown to you and/or FoAM?
  • does it have a (pseudo)scientific or technological element?
  • is it playful?
  • does it foster speculative culture?
  • will it provide a pause, a fresh breath, an opening, a moment of stillness in people's lives?
  • does it encourage participation?
  • does it include moments of reflection?
  • does it create a world - a total or complete, synaesthetic experience?
  • does it focus on whole lifecycle and has a holistic worldview?

If the answer is YES to any of the following questions, the project could not be considered by FoAM without substantial changes:

  • is it one dimensional (i.e. is it dealing with a single issue, using a single approach, by a single individual)?
  • is it wasteful (in terms of human & electrical energy, waste products, time…)?
  • is it unsustainable (environmentally, socially, culturally)?
  • does it focus on producing an artefact for its own sake (without taking the whole lifecycle of the artefact into account)?
  • is it one-directional (i.e. is it 'for' people instead of 'with' people)?
  • does it require a big, expensive production to produce a temporary result (e.g. a large installation on a 2 day festival)?
  • does it separate thinkers from makers?
  • does it treat scientists & technologists as technicians, artists & designers as 'prettifiers', or crafts and trade's people as mere 'manual labour'?
  • […]
  • foam_project_criteria.txt
  • Last modified: 2017-06-17 19:44
  • by maja