Read ‘The Ministry for the Future’ With The SciFri Book Club

While we live on the precipice of global climate disaster, this work of speculative fiction creates a drama out of the near future.

illustrated stack of books with text "scifri book club"Welcome to the SciFri Book Club page about The Ministry For The Future. There’s lots of ways to participate: Read the book, join our community space, attend an event, or send a message on the SciFri VoxPop app.


The cover of THE MINISTRY FOR THE FUTURE by Kim Stanley Robinson. The background is the sun rising over Earth, shot from space.This February, the SciFri Book Club will dive into a work of speculative fiction about the near future with The Ministry for the Future by Kim Stanley Robinson. The story introduces readers to a familiar version of some of the key players stoking the fire of climate change—from miscommunications between government organizations to individual greed—all while highlighting the human beings that could be affected by exponential environmental decline. In a world ravaged by the effects of climate change, this book follows the story of a protagonist determined to save what remains.

The Ministry for the Future brings together a range of topics, including the climate crisis, geopolitics, global ecology, emerging economic ideas, and more—and we’ll touch on these ideas throughout this Book Club season. You can get your copy from your local bookstore or on Bookshop.org.

This Book Club season kicks off Wednesday, February 1, and you can read along with us! We’ll be (loosely) following this schedule, but all our readers are welcome to join us at their own pace:

  • Chapters 1-23 from February 1-5
  • Chapters 24-56 from February 6-12
  • Chapters 57-81 from February 13-19
  • Chapters 82-106 from February 20-28

Plus, we’ll be hosting virtual and in-person events throughout the month! Keep an eye out on our website or join our Events newsletter to be the first to know.

There are so many ways to dive in and participate! You can grab a copy of the book (and support the author and SciFri), read an excerpt from The Ministry for the Future, join the discussion in our online Book Club community, sign up for our email newsletter, or RSVP for our upcoming Book Club events. Check out all the details below.


Grab Your Own Copy

If you’d like to get a physical copy, we encourage you to start local! Below are our SciFri Book Club partner bookstores and libraries—if you’re in the area, consider supporting your local bookseller or public library (plus, mention our Book Club for a percentage off your purchase at participating shops!).

If they don’t have the book in stock or you’d rather purchase online, you can support Science Friday by buying your copy on our Bookshop.org page.


Save The Date: SciFri Book Club Events

Event promotional image. In top left corner, SciFri Book Club logo, with event info below: The Ministry for the Future: A Global (And Fictional) Response to Climate Change. February 23, 8pm ET Online + Free. To the lower right of the frame is a picture of THE MINISTRY FOR THE FUTURE book cover and a headshot of author Kim Stanley Robinson

The Ministry for the Future: A Global (and Fictional) Response to Climate Change

In his 2020 novel, The Ministry for the Future, Kim Stanley Robinson imagines a not-so-far away future where the new Ministry is tasked with advocating for future generations, and begins to do so with ambitious and controversial projects around the effects of climate change—but not everyone is on board with the risks they plan to take.

RSVP for Feb 23

Join us for a conversation with the author on the science and speculative fiction in the SciFri Book Club pick for February 2023. Come with your queries and wonderings—we’ll be taking your questions in the livestream comments!


The cover of THE MINISTRY FOR THE FUTURE by Kim Stanley Robinson with a background featuring outer space and many stars.

SciFri Book Club February community meeting: The Ministry for the Future

Want to meet other SciFri Book Club members, talk about the book selection, and find more resources for deeper learning—all without leaving your home? Our community meeting is the place for you!

RSVP for Feb 28

This discussion meeting will focus on themes and topics featured in The Ministry for the Future. You’re welcome to join us no matter your reading progress—come chat with other science-interested folks about the climate crisis, geopolitics, global ecology, emerging economic ideas, and the human response to environmental catastrophe. 


Join Our Community Space

And as you start reading, join us on our online community space: the Science Friday Book Club is now on Mighty Networks, a platform where we can gather, read and discuss science books together. We’ve built this community space because you told us you wanted a better way to be connected with other SciFri Book Clubbers, and we hope you’ll join us there!

Join Our Community


Read An Excerpt

Not sure this is the book for you? Want to read an excerpt before you commit? We’ve got you covered.

Orbit Books, the publisher of The Ministry for the Future, has offered SciFri Book Clubbers an excerpt of the book! You can read this sample on our website.

Read The Excerpt


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Reading recommendations, straight to your inbox. We send emails a few times per week. If you want to learn more about what we’re reading, you can check it out on our Book Club spotlight page.

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Meet the Writer

About Diana Plasker

Diana Plasker is the Experiences Manager at Science Friday, where she creates live events and partnerships to delight and engage audiences in the world of science.

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