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The handbook is pedagogically oriented. To invite readers to engage in new and alternative modes of research, we aim to explore how co-learning and co-creation can be staged together with and analysed with people rather than for them. The more thoughtful technical developers understand that technologies need to work with and incorporate the social complexities of the real world to be successful. The crux of the matter is how to make this integration of perspectives happen pedagogically. Pedagogically, the proposed structure of the handbook integrates perspectives on automated futures that span philosophical and practical levels – from understanding to skills and value-based evaluations.

There will be 21 chapters of approximately 7,000 to 8,000 words each (including references), and the general editors’ Introduction, for a total of approximately 200,000 words. The chapters will be evenly divided among the handbook’s three sections – Imaginaries, Interactions, and Impact – allowing readers to engage in alternative narratives about automation and its futures. In the first section (Imaginaries), the handbook explores the different and sometimes competing notions of automated futures while showing how they are rooted in both historical events and friction between different ways of thinking. The handbook’s second section (Interaction) expands on and engages critically with these imaginaries by exploring different ways to ‘re-humanise’ automated futures and the implications of people’s presence within them. In the third and final section of the book, we look at how alternative futures can be made sustainable (or not) or developed in a way that is desirable, ethical, appropriate, and, in short, pleasant.