After prohibition

Tord Halvor Langfeldt Stenstadvold


Høst 2019
Institutt for design

Josina Vink
In the debate around drug reform in Norway there are two main vocal factions, those advocating for regulation of recreational drugs and those advocating against. The factions are characterised by echo-chamber mechanics and hostility. In addition, power in the debate is unbalanced, as one side is often supported by police and politicians, and the other side are currently supporting the legalisation of illegal activity. Members of the factions often discredit or dismiss the other factions point of view, and  this creates a debate that moves slowly.
But the rate of movement in the debate is likely to change. In 2020 a suggestion for a new drug policy will be considered. An expected outcome of the drug reform is depenalisation of drugs for personal use. This will mark the end of drug prohibition in Norway, and might open up new public conversations about drugs and potential regulation for recreational use. The debate climate today is in a state where conversations across factions have proven to be difficult.
Therefore, After prohibition attempts to facilitate conversations internally in each faction. The process of structured futures-speculation has identified core assumptions that informants from both sides of the debate have about the future. Using those core assumptions, the project has developed a framework for structured dialogues around provocative fictions, that can be leveraged to engage in public discussion across factions. By using role-playing mechanics it encourages empathy with, and consideration for, the opposing factions point of view. It uses this “game-space” as an opportunity to identify common ground in the debate to come. By identifying common ground the factions can bring the public discussion further, and consider what might happen after prohibition.
Tord Halvor Langfeldt Stenstadvold tord.ste@gmail.com