Imagining Reality

Does imagination encourage or impede progress?

None of us believe Mr. Darcy or Oliver Twist are real, no matter how much we might wish it so. Yet fiction's most fantastical creations have a habit of leaping into reality. Does imagination create reality, and if so, do we need to conjure new visions of better worlds to relegate the darkness of the present?

Dylan Evans is a behavioural scientist and CEO of risk intelligence company Projection Point. He has been selected as among the Independent’s twenty best young writers in Britain and described by the Guardian as “Alain de Botton in a lab coat”.

Here he speaks to the IAI about the relationship between imagination and reality, and why this affects how we can build a better future.


You take the view that our imaginations play a very important part in shaping our reality. Can you give a few examples of how this works?

It is more accurate to say that our imaginations shape our perception of reality, than to say

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