Shaping Cities

Symposium: European cities in context

From May 21 till May 23, 2012, The CULBURB symposium about “shaping cities” was held in Prague. Together with 40 chosen NGOs from Europe, which are all involved in urban development, discussions, and reflections upon non-profit organisations and their role in the creation of city space was set on the agenda.

The invited organisations are on many occasions first movers, trying to change city space on different levels. From local projects to global networks, which creates a nice and dynamic atmosphere for a discussion, insight in work methods and projects where presented. The symposium was part of the CULBURB initiative, which mainly concerns the activation of public realms in the suburbs of Central European capital cities, using minimal economic and financial instruments. The symposium focused on few prioritized questions:

Are the non-elected groups of interest promoting their own interpretation of public good? Or do they represent a litmus paper of the level of democracy in the society? Besides the opportunity of a vis-à-vis discussion between lots of urban development organisations that operate all throughout Europe, the symposium offered a chance to make a unifying web database of such organisations. This database was called Uconnector. The main outcome of this symposium was the partnership with Zeppelin and Connected: Things about future, cities and people. In addition, interesting discussions was further taken with the Cities Foundation, which was also present.

Cities Foundation, Netherlands