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Imagining the future of the Insectarium

English
Imagining the Insectarium 2021–2025

Laboratory of Possibilities project

Imagining the Future of the Insectarium is a citizen participation process aimed at bringing humans and nature closer together through the love of insects, inside and outside the walls of new Insectarium.

New insect museum to open soon

The Insectarium de Montréal is undergoing a complete metamorphosis. The brand-new insect museum will showcase a rejuvenated architectural design based on the principles of biophilia, a growing trend in architecture characterized by a desire to draw nearer to the conditions of a natural environment such as natural textures and lighting as well as views on outdoor nature. The museum circuit will also deliver an immersive experience that takes visitors into the midst of insect life and its environment.

A major goal: Foster appreciation for insects

Beyond form, a paradigm change is taking place: Imagining the Future of the Insectarium is an ideation process and a realignment of actions in favour of entomophilia, i.e. a fondness and appreciation for insects. By allowing ourselves to be inspired, touched, and even guided by insects, Montréal Space for Life hopes that a true feeling of brotherly love (philia) and gratitude towards these amazing beings will lead to ideas and concrete actions throughout Quebec society and, why not, way beyond our borders!

The Insectarium will push its nature-friendly initiatives even further and promote the experience of entomophilia both within its walls and beyond. The Imagining the Future of the Insectarium process began at the end of 2020 and will run until 2025.

A unique, authentic, participatory process

Some 70 people from a wide range of backgrounds have been invited to take part in a frank, open discussion on acknowledging the contribution of insects to the overall well-being of our planet. The virtual co-creation workshops drew on the expertise of our employees and other stakeholders with a view to imagining, building and inspiring a vision that will cross-fertilize the museum’s ideas and projects far beyond its four walls.

Valuable learnings

Some 70 people from a wide range of backgrounds have been invited to take part in a frank, open discussion on acknowledging the contribution of insects to the overall well-being of our planet. The virtual co-creation workshops drew on the expertise of our employees and other stakeholders with a view to imagining, building and inspiring a vision that will cross-fertilize the museum’s ideas and projects far beyond its four walls.

Participants got to share experiences in plenary, explore topics in subgroups and have periods of reflection on their own. Based on the "The work that reconnects" approach, the four Imagining the Future workshops at the Insectarium led to a number of valuable learnings.

  1. Connect: Stay grounded in gratitude
    What does life look like for a human who embraces entomophilia on a daily basis? This is the question that was explored by participants in the first workshop designed to generate a feeling of gratitude. Through a participatory methodology, they were able to identify the conditions in which entomophilia can flourish.
  2. Feel: Honour pain
    A workshop dedicated to the expression of emotions aroused by the planetary situation, proof of our interdependence with all other living things.
  3. Dream: Change your perspective
    Considering that we are all stakeholders in the same system and that the challenges we face result from the interactions within it, this workshop enabled us to identify the actors with whom the Insectarium is linked. The goal: to imagine of the best ways to interact with these actors in order to promote entomophilia.
  4. Embody: Take action
    What would the entomophilia-driven society we aspire to look like? In this final workshop, participants shared their vision, highlighting the actions needed to reach this goal.

In short, the workshops led to a new positioning for the Insectarium that will be expressed along four main lines: influencing decision making; inspiring creation; welcoming diversity; and connecting all living things. To learn more, read the final report of the Imagining the Future of the Insectarium workshops (in French only).

We hope this approach will result in a change in values and behaviours that will transform the relationship between humans, insects and nature. 

Stay tuned for the upcoming opening of the new Insectarium!

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