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In this panel we examine the negotiation of "temporal horizons" - the parsing of indefinite perspectives subject to immense variation and contingent on local assessments and situated knowledges. How individuals and communities negotiate this divergence has affective resonance and concrete effects.
In this panel, we examine the negotiation of "temporal horizons" - the parsing of indefinite perspectives subject to immense variation and contingent on local assessments and situated knowledges. Despite being tethered to what seems, at first glance, to be a shared present, the assessment of divergent temporal horizons signals instances in which different actors perceive or prioritize radically disparate concerns because of dissimilar imagined timelines. The temporal proximity, or distance, of future consequences, and the requisite accounting that takes place in the present, thus shapes practices and narratives according to causal logics that are not necessarily shared or collectively acknowledged. How individuals and communities negotiate this divergence has both affective resonance and concrete effects. For example, in clinical encounters, considerations of crisis and recovery can be meaningfully understood over the life course, while for reimbursing insurance companies the most important horizon is short-term cost-effectiveness. These different horizons have significant consequences for patient care, and for the affective arrangement of clinical practice. In education, the development of programs built on 'aspirational', 'visionary', and 'sustainable' ideals connects young people to a global future, yet may be out of step with infrastructural or bureaucratic limitations in the present. Drawing on ethnographic contexts ranging from crisis resolution, to public health, to education and beyond, this panel examines how asynchronous assessments of temporal horizons create different values, priorities, and concerns regarding the pursuit of common "goals" or outcomes.