Wanted: Volunteers

For five whole days, we will transform the city into one huge festival including over 300 programmes and thousands of visitors. There is an enormous amount of work to do, which would be impossible without the help of a great team of superheroes! This is why we need you!

Who are you? You are committed, enthusiastic and not afraid to get your hands dirty. In other words: you are a hero! We need you to host our speakers and visitors, help out with setting up and dismantling events, scanning tickets, runner activities and so much more.

Do you want a free festival pass? Do you want to contribute to a better city? Do you want to be part of an inspiring team? Do you want to experience WeMakeThe.City from backstage? Sign up here and help us make WeMakeThe.City into a great success!

WeMakeThe.City takes place from 20-24 June, the set-up period starts on Monday, June 18. 

Christian Iaione

Christian Iaione is a professor of Public Law at the LUISS University of Rome and has done pioneering research on the city as a commons. Ianione argues the importance of better cooperation between urban stakeholders, in which several parties feel responsible for the city and its public space.

Iaione believes that if several parties take responsibility for this space, the streets, parks, and squares and other public spaces in the city will benefit. Iaione has started several urban projects to promote this idea in which universities, companies, government agencies and social organisations work closely together with residents and initiators. Iaione also advocates new regulations to optimise these collaborations.

He will speak about his experiences at the conference  Co-Creating the City on Thursday, June 21.

Gil Kelley

Gil Kelley is an internationally recognised urban strategist and visionary. He currently serves as the General Manager of Planning, Urban Design, and Sustainability for the City of Vancouver. Kelley has is a fierce promoter of civic engagement and innovative thinking in both his public and private work.

Kelley also leads an independent planning consultancy and continues to advise cities and governments on a range of urban development strategies, including economic development, neighbourhood and downtown revitalisation, waterfront development, urban design and sustainability.

In the past he was the Chief Planner for several West Coast cities and an independent advisor to cities and governments across the globe. He also served as the Director of Citywide Planning for the City of San Francisco, the Director of Planning for the City of Portland, and Director of Planning and Development for the City of Berkeley.

Gil Kelley is a speaker at the conference Up Close and Liveable on Friday, 22 June.

Adele Tan

Adele Tan is Group Director of Strategic Planning, responsible for the long-term land use planning for Singapore. She has been with the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Singapore since 1997 – this department focuses on national land use planning and conservation with a mission to make Singapore a great city to live, work and play.

She has been involved in all kinds of land use planning matters, in the 20 years she’s served the Singapore public service. She’s worked on balancing development and conservation, planning for an aging population and developing a master plan for Singapore’s underground space. She was also Director of Corporate Development in Singapore’s National Parks Board from 2012-2014.

Adele Tan is a speaker at the conference Up Close and Liveable on Friday, 22 June.

Toni L. Griffin

Toni L. Griffin is a designer, planner, and researcher with years of experience in combining the practice of architecture, urban design and planning with the execution of innovative, large-scale, mixed-use urban redevelopment projects, and citywide and neighbourhood planning strategies. Design, inclusiveness, and justice are key in her work.

She is the founder of the firm Urban Planning for the American City in New York, and through her practice, she served as project director for the Detroit Work Project Long Term Planning Initiative and released Detroit Future City, a comprehensive citywide framework for urban transformation.

Just City Lab explores the definition of ‘urban justice’ and ’the just city’. What is the impact of design and planning on the inclusiveness of cities and neighbourhoods?

Griffin started her career as an architect with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill in her hometown Chicago, where she was an associate partner involved in architecture and urban design projects in London and Chicago. 

At the Harvard Graduate School of Design, Griffin leads the Just City Lab, which explores the definition of ‘urban justice’ and ‘the just city’, as well as the impact of design and planning on the resilience and inclusiveness of cities, neighbourhoods, and the public space.

Griffin will speak on June 20 and June 21 about her experiences with planning and designing the ‘just city’.

New Tokyo Story

Symposium on Housing, Living, and Mobility in a Post-Growth Megacity

A symbiosis of large-scale transformation and small-scale intervention is becoming the new feature of global capitals in developed countries.

Living cities are constantly transforming. While historically the cause and dynamic of this transformation varies per city, globalization has gradually changed site-specific factors into more common, comparable elements. Every major city in every country is involved in an international competition to attract investment, international companies and young, high-quality human resources, while most mature developed societies face an ageing population and rapid urbanization. This global dynamic has become undeniable and is a substantial cause for the physical and social transformation of cities. We are not here to criticize this dynamic. Our concern is to make the best of the situation.

A symbiosis of large-scale transformation and small-scale intervention is becoming the new feature of global capitals in developed countries. With its extreme concentration of population and economic and political activity and its extreme level of ageing, Tokyo forms a fascinating urban laboratory with which to investigate and understand the current trend. In this symposium, we have invited Tokyo-based specialists – academics and practitioners – to give a comprehensive explanation of these symptoms of Tokyo’s transformation and of the ways in which the government, companies and citizens manage its urban future. Amsterdam, a small global city with 2.5 million inhabitants, can learn by examining Tokyo, the world’s biggest city with 38 million inhabitants, and can draw inspiration for new ways of dealing with practical, local knowledge through holistic intervention in a high-dynamic urban fabric under the pressure of globalization.

New Tokyo Story is made possible by the University of Amsterdam – Centre for Urban Studies, Amsterdam Economic Board, Amvest, Arcadis, BAM, Gemeente Amsterdam (Wonen en Ruimte & Duurzaamheid), Gemeente Almere, Gemeente ZaanstadDe Alliantie, De Key, Provincie Noord-Holland, GVB en Pakhuis de Zwijger.

Eva Gladek

Eva Gladek is the founder and CEO of Metabolic, a leading consulting and venture building company that uses systems thinking to tackle critical sustainability challenges. Gladek’s originally trained as a molecular biologist and industrial ecologist.

In her years of consulting work and concept development, Gladek has advised over 250 companies and industry leaders. She is an expert in technical environmental management techniques and has developed leading frameworks for systems thinking and the circular economy. She is consistently listed among the top influencers in sustainability in the Netherlands, a country recognised as leading the transition to the circular economy.

Gladek is a speaker at the c onference Setting the Urban Agenda of Tomorrow on Wednesday, June 20.

April 26: Festive Prelaunch WeMakeThe.City

At this event, we invite you and our partners to a sneak preview of the WeMakeThe.City programme. We will announce our inspiring speakers, zoom in on parts of the programme and go through the festival in broad terms. Afterwards, we will toast together to the festival that makes cities better.

The prelaunch will take place on April 26 at Pakhuis de Zwijger from 5-7 pm. See you there!

Sheila Foster

How do we ensure both environmental benefits and environmental taxes are fairly distributed?

Sheila Foster is a professor in Government Policy and in Law at Georgetown University. Foster has written several publications about land use, environmental law and anti-discrimination legislation. Much of her work is about environmental justice: how do we ensure that both environmental benefits and environmental taxes are fairly distributed? Especially in New York and New Jersey, Foster has worked with many communities on the issues raised by this environmental justice.

Foster has received several awards for her work on environmental justice and urban development. Her most recent work focuses on the legal and theoretical framework in which the decisions regarding land use are made, especially in urban contexts.

Foster is a speaker at the conference Co-Creating the City on Thursday, June 21.

You Make WeMakeThe.City: Join the Meetup on 18 April

Are you into making the city, in any way? And would you like to get involved in the WeMakeThe.City festival? Feel free to join our WeMakeThe.City information meet-up! Wednesday 18 April, you can come along to an information evening at Pakhuis de Zwijger from 17:00 – 19:00. Everyone is welcome to join! So, if you’re interested in hearing more about the festival, if you have any questions, or you’d just like to come meet the organization? Sign up here for the meet-up. We look forward to seeing you there!

Co-Creating the City

How does co-creation function in the urban practice? What are the innovative mechanisms cities around Europe experiment with in order to enhance co-creation?

The notion of co-creation as a means to address complex urban challenges is here to stay. There is a growing awareness of the fact that a collaborative approach to city-making, where knowledge institutions, businesses, start-ups, SMEs, welfare organisations, social innovators and the government are equal partners, enhances social innovation leading to a more successful,  sustainable and inclusive city.

Organising a level playing field in which these stakeholders can truly work together is the greatest task awaiting many cities. How does co-creation work in the urban practice? What kind of innovative mechanisms do cities around Europe experiment with in order to enhance co-creation? And how can these experiments be eventually effectuated into governance models?
We will talk to practitioners and city representatives, and exchange experience with a variety of approaches, ranging from co-creation to participatory governance and decision-making. We will share best practices and processes, discuss the necessary preconditions and aim to identify and explore opportunities to overcome bottlenecks in how we co-create our cities today.

Charles Landry

Charles Landry is an international authority on the use of imagination and creativity in urban change. He is currently a fellow at the Robert Bosch Academy in Berlin. He invented the concept of the Creative City in the late 1980’s. Its focus is on how cities can create the enabling conditions for people and organizations to think, plan and act with imagination to solve problems and develop opportunities. The notion has become a global movement and changed the way cities thought about their capabilities and resources.

Landry helps cities identify and make the most of their potential by triggering their inventiveness and thinking and by opening up new conversations about their future. His aim is to help cities become more resilient, self-sustaining and to punch above their weight.

Acting as a critical friend he works closely with decision makers and local leaders in the short and longer term. He stimulates, facilitates and inspires so cities can transform for the better. He helps find apt and original solutions to seemingly intractable dilemmas, such as marrying, social creativity, innovation and tradition, or balancing wealth creation and social cohesiveness, or local distinctiveness and a global orientation. His overall aim is to help cities get onto the global radar screen.

Landry facilitates complex urban change and visioning processes and undertakes tailored research often creating his own projects. These include the Urban Psyche test developed with Chris Murray and the ‘Creative City Index’ in collaboration with Bilbao and developed with Jonathan Hyams. It is a strategic tool that measures, evaluates and assesses the innovative eco-system of a city and its capacity to adapt to radical global shifts and adjustments. So far 23 cities have taken part from Helsinki to Adelaide, Krakow to Taipei, Mannheim, and Plymouth.

Landry is a speaker at the conference Co-Creating the City on Thursday, June 21.