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As dominant forces shaping the built environment are increasingly changing under the influence of technologies, new networks, strategies and systems, architects also need to revisit their model of practice. Can speculative approaches, that consider architecture as a process, narrative or experiment, point the way? How can these approaches make traction in the ‘real world’? This talk will examine the power of innovative, fictional approaches to design in generating new ideas about architecture. In particular, it will aim to show how such attitudes towards design can addressing the contradictions and challenges that architects are facing in their everyday work.