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’.

Kate Raworth

Kate Raworth is a groundbreaking economist, working at the University of Oxford, where she teaches on the Masters in Environmental Change and Management. She is also a Senior Associate at the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership.

She gained a lot of attention with her work on the ‘doughnut economy’ about an economic model balancing between essential human needs and planetary boundaries.

The book ‘Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think like a 21st Century Economist’ was published in 2017 in the UK and the USA and was subsequently translated into Italian, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch and Japanese. She argues for reconsidering the fundaments of economic sciences. Economists should no longer focus on economic growth but on how to provide every world citizen with access to basic services like food and education, whilst working on protecting the ecosystem for the sake of future generations.

She has written for media including The Guardian, The New Statesman,, and, and has contributed to radio programmes for BBC Radio 4, The World Service, ABC and NPR, as well as television including CNN World News, Al-Jazeera, BBC, ITV and CBC. The Guardian has named her “one of the top ten tweeters on economic transformation”.

She blogs at and tweets @kateraworth.

Raworth opens the WeMakeThe.City festival on Wednesday, June 20.

Together – Strategies on How to Make the City of Tomorrow

Around the world, we see an increased awareness that in order to tackle challenges of that scale, we need to work together.

Our cities today are facing many urban challenges. They may arise from the continuous growth of our cities, climate change or the fact we have reached the limits of non-renewable resources. Wider societal dynamics such as globalisation, migration, and digitisation affect changes in the urban economy, the social composition of neighbourhoods and the way we work.

We set the stage for the five-day WeMakeThe.City festival and through a variety of lenses we will be looking at approaches that successfully experimented with the collaboration between multiple stakeholders. We will learn how this is not just a strategy to solve problems but a way to pursue innovation.

Amsterdam has a rich history of multi-stakeholder approaches, initially meant to protect the city from being flooded by the high sea level. But over time, this has resulted in a fertile ground for collaboration, now known as the Amsterdam Approach. In 2016 Amsterdam won the Innovation Capital of Europe award, because of its urban innovation ecosystem which consists of stakeholders from public, private and non-profit sectors, working together to make the city better. Collaboration pays off and makes our future cities more resilient, successful and inclusive.

The City of Amsterdam as a Founding Partner

The first three editions of WeMakeThe.City (2018-2020) will be subsidised by the City of Amsterdam. Apart from co-initiating the festival, Amsterdam is also a programme- and media partner. The municipal departments Planning and Sustainability; City Development and Education, Youth and Welfare Services and the offices of the Chief Technology Officier and Chief Science Officer are programme partner. The Department of Communication and the Department of External Relations are media partner and partner in international programming, respectively.

‘Close to Reality’ at NDSM

‘Close to Reality’ exhibits 50 scale models – from regional scale to actual building, from concept to final design, from urban design to architecture, and public space design.

These models contain all aspects of urban planning and architecture. The exhibition shows the tremendous efforts required to get to a final design and creates an opportunity for the audience to both imagine and discuss future challenges of city planning. The models present an overview of future developments and place design as they create a broader context to inspire, discuss, criticise and focus on future challenges.

State of the Region: Celebrating Together, Looking Back and Forward

On Wednesday afternoon, June 20, the State of the Region will come together for the first time in Theater Amsterdam; an annual event organised by MetropoolRegioAmsterdam, Amsterdam Economic Board, and Amsterdam Marketing.

During this day, the most important stakeholders from the industry, knowledge institutions, cultural organisations, and regional authorities will come together to share their vision on, and the results from, the region and to discuss the joint challenges. The purpose of the State of the Region is multiple: informing, inspiring, involving and celebrating successes.