A Man on a Mission to Make Humanity ‘Future Proof’

Daan Roosegaarde is on a mission to make humanity “future proof.” He’s not trying to save the planet; he says the planet will save itself. Humans, on the other hand, need a little help. A designer from the Netherlands could be our unlikely savior.

“A lot of the problems we’re facing—rising sea levels, air pollution—are, to me, an issue of bad design,” the eponymous founder of Rotterdam-based design firm Studio Roosegaarde tells Fortune. “We have created this current situation, now we have to design our way out of it.”

When Roosegaarde talks about design, he doesn’t mean it in the classic sense. The solution to our problems is not to make chairs chicer and, if it were, Roosegaarde would be out of luck. By his own admission, he’s no Philippe Starck. Instead, design is about setting goals for our future and creating standards to achieve that vision. Most people would call that “social design” but the Dutch artist and entrepreneur has a different name for it: Schoonheid.

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Image source: Fortune