Future Smart Cities II – Design for our Future Self 1

Future Smart Cities II
Imagine yourself in 2025 or 2050

We had a great session yesterday connecting designers, architects, social scientists, policy makers and social innovators from Lisbon, Amsterdam, London and New York to discuss the challenges and opportunities of an aging society.

Smart Cities 2 - 3.jpg

In Lisbon (left) we were joined by Pedro Veiga (FCCN), Ana Fatia (Action for Age), Susana AntĂłnio (Think Public Portugal), Luis Jeronimo (the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation) and Pedro Rocha Vieira (Experimenta Design). In Amsterdam (centre) we were joined by Peter Roelofsma (HealthLab), Sabine Wildevuur (CareLab, Waag Society), Wytse Miedema (Aging Well, Almere Municipality), Martin Kriens (Amsterdam Smart City)  and Sacha van Tongeren (Waag Society). In New York (right) we were joined by Matthias Hollwich (HOLLWICHKUSHNER). In London we were joined by Annabel Knight (The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation), Kevin Johnson (Aging Well, Cisco IBSG)  and Diogo Vasconcelos (Cisco IBSG).
Demographic changes are likely to place huge burdens on pension systems as well as health, housing and care services. There are a raft of new and emerging social needs – such as loneliness, and isolation which will need new and fresh thinking if they are to be addressed. Even though the scale of the challenge is daunting there are a number of new projects and new approaches – around design, ICT and architecture – which could point a way forward.

Each of the projects showcased yesterday have at their core the notion that the elderly are a resource, that all projects should be user driven and user centred –  or put another way, developed by and with, not for, the elderly.

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The discussion started with a presentation of the pioneering and innovative HealthLab project by Peter Roelofsma. The HealthLab project is based on three main strands: ICT to support the elderly to
remain active and live independently, for longer in their homes, through for example, virtual coaches; a social or multi-cultural aspect which places importance on social relationships and provides opportunities for developing and cementing social ties; and architecture which provides the setting for independent living but also the spaces for meeting and social interaction. In this way, the project is developing a holistic approach to ageing.

Then we discussed the need to move away from ICT driven innovation and
explore other fields, other perspectives and approaches to innovation in
the context of ageing. We talked about smart architecture and Matthias
Hollwich presented some of his most recent projects, including BOOM.


Boom is a retirement village like no other – a community oriented development in Palm Springs for LBGT retirees. With projects like these, Hollwich’s remark that “there are 17,000 nursing homes in the US and 17,000 reasons why not to go to a nursing home” is definitely true.


We’re hoping to continue this discussion next month. For more information contact



Press Release – Launching Dialogue Cafe Amsterdam 0 Reply

Inviting organisations in Amsterdam to take part in this groundbreaking project and collaborate with organisations in Lisbon and Rio de Janeiro.

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS – September, 21, 2010 – The Dialogue CafĂ© Association is excited to announce the launch of its third Dialogue CafĂ© at Waag Society in Amsterdam on 21st September 2010.

Dialogue Café is a non-profit initiative, which uses state of the art video conferencing technology to enable face-to-face conversations between diverse groups of people from around the world so that they can share experiences, learn from each other and work together to make the world a better place.

Waag Society develops creative technology for social innovation. The foundation researches, develops concepts, pilots and prototypes and acts as an intermediate between the arts, science and the media. Waag Society cooperates with cultural, public and private parties. Waag Society is housed in two historic monuments in Amsterdam, de Waag and Pakhuis de Zwijger. Dialogue Café Amsterdam will be based at de Waag.

Dialogue Café Chairman, Diogo Vasconcelos: We are thrilled to open Dialogue Café in the city centre of Amsterdam, with Waag Society, a vibrant forward-looking organization. Amsterdam now has a global platform that embodies the new nature of innovation: open, collaborative, global. The opportunities are unlimited. With Dialogue Café, Amsterdam is, more than ever, a global meeting point.

For the launch, we’ll be connecting the three Dialogue CafĂ©s in Lisbon, Amsterdam and Rio de Janeiro to Cisco offices in Sao Paulo, Warsaw, New York and Oslo for a round-table discussion. For this occasion we will be joined by President Jorge Sampaio, High Representative to the UN Alliance of Civilisations, Marleen Stikker of Waag Society, Barbara Coutinho, Director of MUDE, Katia de Marco, Director ABGC, Prof. Jose Santos from INSEAD, Prof. Miroslaw Miller from the University of Wroclaw, Barbara Stutz from the HUB Sao Paulo, Bente Erichsen from the Nobel Peace Centre in Oslo, Pedro Veiga, Chairman of the FCCN and others. 


•    With support from the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, Cisco, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, the Anna Lindh Foundation and others, the Dialogue CafĂ© Association is creating a global network of physical spaces – Dialogue CafĂ©s. Dialogue CafĂ©s will provide access to state of the art video conferencing technology. to enable city-to-city and multi-city conversations and activities. 
•    All of the Dialogue CafĂ©s will be connected through a global technology platform to enable city-to-city and multi-city conversations and activities. Dialogue CafĂ©s will provide a space for informal conversations as well as more structured multi-city activities such as workshops, seminars, conferences, concerts and lectures.
•    Dialogue CafĂ© results from the simple idea that people have many things in common and given the opportunity, they will explore their common interests, sparking collaborations and stimulating ideas that address the major issues of today. 
•    Dialogue CafĂ© believes that these kinds of conversations and collaborations can lead to new ways of thinking and doing: they can empower individuals and communities, break down prejudice and misconceptions and promote greater understanding and co-operation across cultures.
•    Dialogue CafĂ© is created for individuals and organizations with a social, environmental, educational or cultural mission – such as foundations, civil society organizations, community groups, universities, schools, social enterprises, public sector bodies and agencies.
•    There are now three Dialogue CafĂ©s open – in Rio de Janeiro at the Candido Mendes University (UCAM), in Lisbon at the Museum of Fashion and Design (MUDE) and in Amsterdam at the Waag Society. Soon, Dialogue CafĂ©s will be opened in Sao Paulo, Mexico City, Oslo, Wroclaw, London, Florence, Ramallah and Tel Aviv. By the end of 2011, we will have between 10 and 15 Dialogue CafĂ©s open.  
•    Each Dialogue CafĂ© is managed by a local partner who oversees the day to day management of the Dialogue CafĂ©, including programming of events and activities, outreach to engage a wide variety of users and ensuring the financial sustainability of the Dialogue CafĂ©.
•    It is very easy to get involved in Dialogue CafĂ©. Users have to book the facility in advance. To do this, people should get in touch with their local Dialogue CafĂ© manager who can book a session and link up the Dialogue CafĂ©s. So, all users have to do is turn up to their local Dialogue CafĂ© (e.g. Lisbon) and get their friends or colleagues to go their local Dialogue CafĂ© (e.g. Amsterdam).
•    Dialogue CafĂ©s are spaces for innovation and creativity – with a particular focus on cross-cultural dialogue, social innovation, civic participation and arts, creativity and culture.  The following examples illustrate the range and variety of activities that will be enabled by Dialogue CafĂ© as the network grows and develops around the world:
– Young people in Istanbul, London and Toronto sharing stories about their heritage.
– Women from Cairo, Doha and Amsterdam discussing the role of education and employment in empowering women.
– Multi-city conferences and events on topics such as climate change, creativity and innovation, ageing and social exclusion connecting London, New York, Amsterdam, Florence, Doha and Ramallah.
– Joint projects linking schools in Lisbon and Rio de Janeiro, and Seoul and San Francisco.
– Social entrepreneurs from Cairo, Tel Aviv and Toronto talking about potential commercial collaborations.
– Simultaneous theatre workshops run in Rio de Janeiro, New York and San Francisco.
– Concerts from Rio de Janeiro live to London, Lisbon, Amsterdam, Florence and New York.
– Health practitioners in Ramallah, London and Toronto carrying out joint consultations and training.

Supporting resources:

Marleen Stikker, Director, Waag Society

We are absolutely delighted to be opening Dialogue CafĂ© Amsterdam at Waag Society. For Waag Society, this participation marks a continuation of our longstanding tradition of openness and experimentation, of exploring new ways of using technology to tackle today’s most pressing challenges. Through Dialogue CafĂ©, we will provide a space for global conversations on global issues that matter.

For more information on Dialogue Café visit

•    Waag Society:
•    MUDE:
•    UCAM:
•    Cisco:
•    United Nations’ Alliance of Civilization:
•    Anna Lindh Foundation:
•    Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation:

Contact information
Dialogue Café Association, Julie Caulier-Grice,
 + 44 7825 587 544 |

210910 Press Release Amsterdam.pdf



PICNIC Afternoons @ Dialogue Cafe 0 Reply

Between Wednesday 22nd and Friday 24th September, Dialogue Cafe will be hosting a series of conversations as part of the 2010 PICNIC programme.

The events will take place
each day at Dialogue Cafes in Amsterdam, Lisbon and Rio de Janeiro from 5.30pm until 7.00pm (CET). These events will involve innovators, researchers, entrepreneurs and thought-leaders and will focus on three themes: Re-designing Life, Re-designing the World Around Us and Re-designing Design.

Wednesday 22nd September 5.30pm – 7.00pm

As we are increasingly able to manipulate the building blocks of life and the (living) world around us, the possibilities seem endless: prolonging and enhancing human life with improved healthcare, implanting nano- chips in our brains to boost human intelligence, creating smart materials for more sustainable use, improving food crops and developing sustainable energy sources. But what are the ethical and moral implications of these developments? How does it change our role as human beings in the greater order of things?

Speakers: Rachel Armstrong (Amsterdam) Miguel Neiva (Lisbon) Daniela Pais (Lisbon)

Moderator: Lucas Evers, Waag Society (Amsterdam)

Thursday 23rd September 5.30pm – 7.00pm

Our domestic environment as well as the cities we live in is going to huge change due to fast technological developments. We start to live in smart cities and smart houses, networked with the rest of the world. Our notion of the quality of cities not only depends on the endowment of hard infrastructure (‘physical capital’), but increasingly on the availability and quality of knowledge, communication and social infrastructure, made accessible true technology. (‘intellectual and social capital’). What future scenario’s can we expect? What will or can be the impact on economical, social or environmental issue. What is the ideal design of the world around us?

Speakers: Matthias Hollwich (Amsterdam) Helder Coelho (Lisbon) Luis Correia (Lisbon) Artur Arsénio (Lisbon) José Luiz Moutinho (Lisbon) J. Arthur Vasconcelos (Lisbon

Moderator: Frank Kresin, Waag Society

Friday the 24th September 5.30 – 7.00pm (CET)

The design industry is going through fundamental changes. Open design, downloadable design and distributed design democratize the design industry, and imply that anyone can be a designer or a producer. On the other hand design methodology as a problem solving process has found new applications in a broad range of seemingly unrelated sectors. How will these trends impact the very essence of the design industry, including copyright issues, traditional business models and the role of the professional designer?

Guest Speakers: Geoff Mulgan (Amsterdam) Charlie Leadbeater (Amsterdam) Blindesign (Lisbon) White Tent (Lisbon) Aforest Design – SARA Lamurias (Lisbon)

Moderator: Barbara Countinho, MUDE (Lisbon)

Picnic Afternoons at Dialogue Cafe.pdf

Come and join us at de Waag! For more information contact
Bringing people together in conversation

Dialogue Cafe is facilitating dialogue between people from all walks of life, across the world, to address social issues ranging from youth literacy to urban development.


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Hi Ashique, Thank you for your interest! Our cycle is finalised but more sessions on crafts will take place at Dialogue Cafe. For instance you can visit our profil in vimeo and attend online some sessions recorded. Otherwise we plan to publish a book with the recommendations and findings of our discussions on crafts. Keep posted! Thanks again for your interest DC team
daliasendra on 2019.07.29