Wales in 2051: Back to Reality

Over the past 6 weeks, Karolina Rucinska and Camille Lovgreen have shared a series of short stories, each one highlighting a key ingredient of sustainable development: people and skills that has become a reality in a post Net Zero Wales of 2051. The story highlights how the skills and practices of the caring economy align with a just transition, using prevention over cure, principles of reciprocity and mutual support, emotions and working with the natural systems that support us. 

Over the past six weeks, Karolina Rucinska and Camille Lovgreen have shared a series of short stories, each one highlighting a key element of sustainable development that has helped shape a post-Net Zero Wales of 2051.

In this post, we aim to distil the key lessons we’ve learned and talk about how we came to write the stories. We know from trailblazers like the Arts Council of Wales and Futerra how important storytelling can be in moving towards transformational change. We also know that these stories need to reflect people from all walks of life and recognise that we can all drive change, whatever our role or job title. These stories aim to ignite conversations and add more puzzle pieces to the exciting, complex mix of solutions we’ll need to reach a fairer, more secure future. 

Whether it’s through sharing these stories, applying some of these initiatives in practice, or sparking conversations about sustainable development, we believe that each of us has a part to play in this ongoing narrative. 

How it all started

We, Camille and Karolina, originally wanted to organise a series of hands-on workshops to help SMEs explore how different, and sometimes overlooked, skills can help ready their workforce for a low-carbon economy. 

But to do so we needed an introduction, preferably a vision-setting piece that describes the impact green skills can make on one’s work. And we wanted to describe the impact of green skills in every line of work, not just in the energy or manufacturing sector.  

Before we knew it, we had created six characters and a future vision in which people in Wales live better lives through a complete system makeover. 

How it went

Every week, we published a story, set in the future, describing a day in the life of a person who meets a journalist who wants to learn about what went well for Wales.  

In doing so, we described what Wales could look like and what work, housing, schooling, farming and local governance could look like.   

In telling these short stories and giving voice to our six characters – Adi, Cameron, Luke, Aman, Cleo, and Gwen-Eddo – we wanted to highlight the role of skills that made that future possible and, more importantly, the role of government in creating conditions to use, elevate, and apply diverse skills, knowledge, capabilities and lived experiences.  

Although it was fiction, we drew inspiration from real people, social enterprises and initiatives, and the solutions we hear and read about but which have not yet become mainstream.  

Many ideas we presented in our stories were based on Welsh social enterprises. Having lived, studied, and worked outside Wales, we also drew on inspiring examples from other countries that show different, more inclusive, more holistic ways of doing things. We know that there are many more examples, from all sectors, that we could not include. 

When writing the stories, it became apparent that each sector we described, whether infrastructure, farming, or education, had to support another sector and that the demise of one business can negatively impact the ability of another business to stay afloat. This reinforced us in the conviction that all sectors are connected, and with them, the lives of our characters and the lives of people now, here in Wales and the world. 

The creative aspect of writing was relatively easy compared to our efforts to translate the vision of green skills into recommendations for hiring managers, recruiters, and directors of small and large organisations.  

To do so, we had to come back to reality and create events in which we explained green skills by giving examples, showing ways to embed these into existing jobs, and exploring what the future could hold for all families. We drew on existing toolkits, live job descriptions and reports to inform two online sessions.  

The Wales 2051 story series and practical sessions we delivered made us realise that the green skills agenda must not be taken for granted. It needs continuous reinforcement, whether through training, events, tutorials, or storytelling, to show that green skills matter to every job.

Where next?

This exercise has sparked excitement across our team as to how else we can use storytelling and initiatives like the Wales 2051 series to make sustainability concepts more relatable and achievable. We invite you, the reader, to share any ideas about how these stories can be further built upon and utilised. 

We’d like to thank all the individuals and organisations that provided the inspiration for this set of stories. You can find some of them below. We also drew from our experience in supporting the Mainstreaming Evidence in the Just Transition evidence panel and discussions around future skills linked to the foundational economy. 

We hope these stories and others like them become a talking point around creating conditions for everyone to thrive. 

If you would like Karolina and Camille to share more insights from this creative process, the role of storytelling in bringing about change, and of course our suggestions around recognising, valuing and embedding green skills, please get in touch! Email us at

Please note that some AI-generated content is included in the featured image for this piece.

List of inspiration: 



Business collaboration


Health care

Policy/community engagement

General organisations and initiatives that have inspired us: 

Scroll to Top
Skip to content