Transformations come along with uncertainty, but at the same time open up new possibilities. They question everyday habits as well as traditional views and challenge us to become active.

Within the project Farming the Uncanny Valley, we developed a methodology based on the concept of the uncanny that makes it possible to open up and guide a dialogue on complex topics such as the bioeconomy in order to find a constructive way of dealing with change. Situational experiences form the common basis for learning experiences, self-reflection and collective exchange.

The project interweaves research from the fields of transformation, participation, science communication, transdisciplinarity and design.

It opened a space in which participants with different attitudes were able to exchange ideas with great openness at eye level and to reflect on personal attitudes.

Applying design-based methods, we used places and things as starting points for engagement that allows for emotions, feelings and subjective perceptions. The uncanny and its inherent ambiguities played an important role as a trigger for discussions and as an introduction to our subject areas. Our approach was accompanied and measured through qualitative social science methods without compromising experiences.

In the course of the project, we held nine workshops at five locations in urban and rural areas with a total of 97 participants on five topics and developed a traveling exhibition that we were able to show at two locations. We have translated the topic of bioeconomy into the five subject areas insects, plants I, plants II, soil and air, which offered a proximity to the Lifeworld of our workshop participants.

This website provides insights into our approach and shows the results of our format and topic research.

The results of the project, in addition to many inspiring experiences, are the presentation of our methodology in the book Farming the Uncanny Valley and a Bioeconomy field of discourse, which shows what the participants of our workshops talked about in connection with the topic of bioeconomy.