The goal of the FutureU research program is to develop an intervention that will increase future-orientation by connecting delinquents to their future self. The immediate benefits of crime can be said to accrue to the present self, whereas its costs come at the expense of a future self. A lack of connectedness to this future self therefore makes the temptation to engage in crime hard to resist. Increasing the salience of the future self by rendering it more vivid increases the likelihood that its interests will be taken into account. In this research program, convicted offenders interact with their future self either by means of an app for mobile devices or in virtual reality. Persuasive visual analogs (“avatars”) of participants are created by manipulating photos with age-progression software to create three-dimensional models of the “future self.” The interactions stimulate real-world self-management skills and are designed to trigger thinking about the future (self) and to render salient potential long-term consequences.
Research output: Scientific articles.