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Highlight from Amsterdam Smart City, Connector of opportunities at Amsterdam Smart City, posted

Amsterdam Smart City Transition Day 2024: Recap

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On Thursday, March 7th, Amsterdam Smart City partners gathered for a day full of inspiration, exchange and connection with each other at our Transition Day! In this article, we give you a quick overview of the challenges we discussed, the inspiration session and the crash course drawing. Interesting in learning more? Read the challenge descriptions by our Program Managers Noor and Pelle (linked below).

About our Transition Days

Our yearly Transition Day is the day on which we investigate together with the network where we can make the most impact this year. Last year on, we mainly looked at the underlying barriers to the (then) surprising challenges and results. These challenges, such as mobility justice and human digitalization, are now completed or handed over. That is why this Transition Day we started working on new challenges. We started working on transition tasks that can only be advanced by working together, where we as a network can make a difference. Together with our knowledge partners and the challenge submitters from our network, we put together the 2024 full day program.

The Underground Challenge

In this session, we dived into the world of underground infrastructure. Many different stakeholders deal with the underground. Electricity cables, fibre optic cables, gas pipelines, heat networks, sewers, but also tree roots and soil, form a complex playing field with many different interests for the parties involved. Right now, collaboration, data sharing, and co-planning between these parties is sub-optimal. Therefore, we started the challenge: Understanding the underground: Collaborating, Sharing Data, and Co-Planning. You can find all the information on the challenge here.

Would you like to join this challenge? Please get in touch with Noor at

The Cooperative Challenge

In the past decade, we have witnessed a surge of cooperatives across society. This is great because cooperative initiatives can help drive sustainability and social goals. However, these initiatives always remain small-scale and localized and, in most cases, accessible only to specific and select demographics. In this session, we discussed the barriers to making cooperatives more mainstream. We decided to focus on the energy domain and defined the following question: How can we help to mainstream energy cooperatives and ensure that structures in society make room for them and barriers are resolved?

You can find all the information on this challenge here. Would you like to join this challenge? Please get in touch with Noor at

The Floating Urban Development Challenge

Due to lack of space and climate change, the future of living might need to partly move on to water areas. Researchers and designers are therefore imagining and conceptualizing floating urban development. However, to make it a truly realistic and imaginable future scenario, there are more hurdles to overcome. This challenge aims to change our collective belief in a way that living on water becomes as a serious option conceivable for everyone. We’ll work on creating imaginable and workable scenarios of urban development on water.

You can find all the information on this challenge here. Would you like to join this challenge? Please get in touch with Pelle at

The Circular challenge

Circular initiatives often struggle to progress beyond the pilot phase. Numerous barriers hinder these circular initiatives, such as lack of data, implementation across the entire production chain, regulatory obstacles, and higher costs.

To overcome these barriers, adjustments to regulations are necessary to better align with circular initiatives, alongside the establishment of shared ownership within the production chain. For this challenge, we decided to focus on Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure. You can find all the information on this challenge here.
Would you like to join this challenge? Please get in touch with Noor at

Inspiration session: Collaborating and building Coalitions – Renée Schoonbeek | Arcadis

Renée Schoonbeek (Arcadis) kicked off the afternoon program with an inspiring session about the dynamics of successful collaboration. She shared two area development projects, one a success and one a failure. The collaboration success was the story of Hudson Square, New York. They successfully managed to get more green into the city, better facilities for bicycles and pedestrians, and renovated a public park. The keys to success were a grassroots initiative, clear goals, and a diverse coalition representing everyone from real estate to residents.

In contrast, the collaboration for the development of Feyenoord's stadium failed due to leadership changes, shifting market conditions, and lack of long-term commitment. Important lessons that emerged from this failure were to continuously focus on collaboration, avoid false consensus, invest in long-term commitment, and be vigilant towards signals of dissent within the collaborating parties.

Renée finished the session with an exercise. The most important thing in collaboration is to properly listen and ask questions. We practised asking questions with the technique “2 down, 1 to the side”. Where you first ask three questions. The 1st question is a rational question (what, who, where, why)? The 2nd question is a follow-up question, again a rational question for clarification or deepening. The 3rd question is an emotional question (how does that feel, how do you look back on it, what have you learned from it?). This exercise helped us to see things from the other person's perspective.

Renée’s key takeaway for reaching consensus in collaborations was to not only look at what you need from another person but also to see what you can offer. With this information in our back pocket, we were ready to start forming our own coalitions.

Crash course drawing – Thomas van Daalen | Flatland agency

From lines to inspiring discussion diagrams. Flatland Agency introduced us to the world of 'Visual Storytelling'. How can you support a story with drawings, or visually represent a summary of a brainstorming session? Thomas from Flatland gave us a masterclass in drawing, demonstrating how simple shapes can say a lot.

We concluded this inspiring day with drinks and also said goodbye to Leonie as program director. With tears and laughter, we thanked her for all her efforts and dedication and wished her all the best for her further recovery.

We would like to give special thanks to everyone that helped organize this Transition Day. Many thanks to RoyalHaskoning, Flatland, Hieroo, Drift and HvA, all contributors to the challenges and all those present!
Our next event (knowledge- and Demoday) is on the 18th of April. Would you like to participate in this Demoday, or learn more about the program? Please reach out to

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Naomi Vrielink, Projectmedewerker at Future City Foundation, posted

Excursie naar Sittard-Geleen en Heerlen – 20 en 21 juni

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Op 20 en 21 juni reizen we af naar het zuiden om daar van Sittard-Geleen en Heerlen te leren. Ervaar in Heerlen en Sittard-Geleen hoe de slimme stad in de praktijk toegepast wordt en waar deze slimme toepassingen het fysieke en sociale domein verbindt.

In Sittard-Geleen zie je hoe zij in hun proeftuin Zeeheldenbuurt in gesprek gaan met de inwoner over activiteiten en bewegen. In Heerlen-Noord leren we van de stappen die worden gezet in een van de gebieden van het Nationaal Programma Leefbaarheid en Veiligheid op gebied van kansengelijkheid. En bij de Brightlands Smart Services Campus in Heerlen gaan we in gesprek over hoe onderzoek en organiseer je samen met diverse partijen digitalisering enerzijds op gebied van circulariteit, anderzijds in het kader van bestaanszekerheid en particpatie. De gebundelde kennis van data science en mensgerichte Artificial Intelligence (AI) leidt tot nieuwe slimme digitale ontwikkelingen en diensten, die de kwaliteit van leven verbeteren.

Dag 1: Proeftuin Zeeheldenbuurt Sittard-Geleen
Met de proeftuin Zeeheldenbuurt speelt de gemeente Sittard-Geleen in op drie thema’s, (Smart City, Participatie en Klimaat adaptatie). Samen met buurtbewoners en vakspecialisten (extern en intern) zijn ze in één buurt aan de slag om een betere toekomstbestendige leefomgeving te creëren en ontmoeting te stimuleren.
De gemeente luistert aan de hand van ‘slimme’ toepassingen naar de inwoner, houdt 0-metingen en monitoren, werkt aan een Digital Twin meetnetwerk en bekijkt dit alles gezamenlijk door de glazen van VR-brillen.
Kortom: Hoe kun je in deze buurt samen een Klimaatbestendige betere leef en ontmoet- omgeving creëren? Welke lessen leren we hier? Wat vinden de buurtbewoners van deze aanpak?

Dag 2: Van de Brightlands Smart Services Campus naar Heerlen – Noord
We starten deze dag in de Brightlands Smart Services Campus met twee parallelle tracks na een gezamenlijke aftrap over hoe de Brightlands Smart Services werkt.

Circulaire track 
CollaborAll/Monady laten aan de hand van de transformatie van het voormalige DSM-hoofdkantoor in Heerlen zien hoe hun Circulaire Build Hubs werken. De Circulaire Build Hub zorgt ervoor dat al die individuele partijen met elk hun eigen informatie, specialistische inzichten, data, specificaties etc. op een makkelijke en betrouwbare manier naar dezelfde fysieke en digitale werkelijkheid kijken én handelen. De Circulaire Build Hub voorkomt onduidelijkheid, missers, onnodig werk, uitlopende planningen en onnodige kosten, vermindert risico’s en zorgt ervoor dat alle informatie in samenhang beschikbaar is. Dit bevordert efficiëntie en draagt bij aan de overgang naar een circulaire economie door duurzaam materiaalgebruik.

Sociale track 
De Brightlands Smart Services Campus huisvest het ELSA Lab armoede en schulden. Dit lab richt zich op het voorkomen van geldproblemen, de bestrijding van schulden en armoede én het verbeteren van de financiële gezondheid. Leer wat hier wordt gedaan op gebied van AI en wat nu al de opbrengsten zijn. Daarna horen we van het Atelier Sociaal Domein van HS Zuyd hoe zij ervaringskennis hoe een samenwerking met ervaringsdeskundigen, onderwijs en onderzoek zorgt voor een betere match tussen vraag en aanbod.

Heerlen- Noord
In de middag bezoeken we Heerlen-Noord, waarin het sociaal en fysiek domein weer samenkomen. We maken een wandeling door een stukje Heerlen-Noord en bezoeken de Sjpruutshop. Een plek waar ouders van pasgeborenen gratis spullen kunnen halen voor de baby en voor de gemeente een vindplaats van de mensen voor wie we aan de slag zijn. Vervolgens lopen we via een opgeknapte kerk (tot limburgs archief), door een tweetal wijken (horende tot de armste wijken van het land). We leren hoe verduurzaming, renovatie tegen de achtergrond van het willen behouden van uniek cultureel erfgoed, namelijk de mijnwerkerswoningen samenkomen.
Datum:  20 en 21 juni 
<strong>Tijd:</strong> 10.00 – 17.00 uur
<strong>Locatie:</strong> Sittard-Geleen, Brightlands Smart Services Campus en Heerlen- Noord

Meld je hieronder aan:

Meet-up from Jun 20th to Jun 21st
Herman van den Bosch, professor in management development , posted

Will the 15-minute city cause the US suburbs to disappear? 6/7

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Urbanisation in the US is undergoing major changes. The image of a central city surrounded by sprawling suburbs therefore needs to be updated. The question is what place does the 15-minute city have in it? That is what this somewhat longer post is about
From the 1950s, residents of US cities began moving en masse to the suburbs. A detached house in the green came within reach for the middle and upper classes, and the car made it possible to commute daily to factories and offices. These were initially still located in and around the cities. The government stimulated this development by investing billions in the road network.
From the 1980s, offices also started to move away from the big cities. They moved to attractive locations, often near motorway junctions. Sometimes large shopping and entertainment centres also settled there, and flats were built on a small scale for supporting staff. Garreau called such cities 'edge cities'.
Investors built new suburbs called 'urban villages' in the vicinity of the new office locations, significantly reducing the distance to the offices. This did not reduce congestion on congested highways.
However, more and more younger workers had no desire to live in suburbs. The progressive board of Arlington, near Washington DC, took the decision in the 1980s to develop a total of seven walkable, inclusive, attractive and densely built-up cores in circles of up to 800 metres around metro stations. In each was a wide range of employment, flats, shops and other amenities . In the process, the Rosslyn-Balston Corridor emerged and experienced rapid growth. The population of the seven cores now stands at 71,000 out of a total of 136,000 jobs. 36% of all residents use the metro or bus for commuting, which is unprecedentedly high for the US. The Rosslyn-Balston Corridor is a model for many other medium-sized cities in the US, such as New Rochelle near new York.
Moreover, to meet the desire to live within walking distance of all daily amenities, there is a strong movement to also regenerate the suburbs themselves. This is done by building new centres in the suburbs and densifying part of the suburbs.
The new centres have a wide range of flats, shopping facilities, restaurants and entertainment centres.  Dublin Bridge Park, 30 minutes from Columbus (Ohio) is one of many examples.
It is a walkable residential and commercial area and an easily accessible centre for residents from the surrounding suburbs. It is located on the site of a former mall.
Densification of the suburbs is necessary because of the high demand for (affordable) housing, but also to create sufficient support for the new centres.
Space is plentiful. In the suburbs, there are thousands of (semi-)detached houses that are too large for the mostly older couples who occupy them. An obvious solution is to split the houses, make them energy-positive and turn them into two or three starter homes. There are many examples how this can be done in a way that does not affect the identity of the suburbs (image).
New construction in suburbs
This kind of solution is difficult to realise because the municipal authorities concerned are bound by decades-old zoning plans, which prescribe in detail what can be built somewhere. Some of the residents fiercely oppose changing the laws. Especially in California, the NIMBYs (not in my backyard) and the YIMBYs (yes in my backyard) have a stranglehold on each other and housing construction is completely stalled.
But even without changing zoning laws, there are incremental changes.  Here and there, for instance, garages, usually intended for two or three cars, are being converted into 'assessor flats' for grandma and grandpa or for children who cannot buy a house of their own.  But garden houses are also being added and souterrains constructed. Along the path of gradualness, this adds thousands of housing units, without causing much fuss.
It is also worth noting that small, sometimes sleepy towns seem to be at the beginning of a period of boom.  They are particularly popular with millennials. These towns are eminently 'walkable' , the houses are not expensive and there is a wide range of amenities. The distance to the city is long, but you can work well from home and that is increasingly the pattern. The pandemic and the homeworking it has initiated has greatly increased the popularity of this kind of residential location.
All in all, urbanisation in the US can be typified by the creation of giant metropolitan areas, across old municipal boundaries. These areas are a conglomeration of new cities, rivalling the old mostly shrinking and poverty-stricken cities in terms of amenities, and where much of employment is in offices and laboratories. In between are the suburbs, with a growing variety of housing. The aim is to create higher densities around railway stations. Besides the older suburbs, 'urban villages' have emerged in attractive locations. More and more suburbs are getting their own walkable centres, with a wide range of flats and facilities. Green space has been severely restricted by these developments.
According to Christopher Leinberger, professor of real estate and urban analysis at George Washington University, there is no doubt that in the US, walkable, attractive cores with a mixed population and a varied housing supply following the example of the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor are the future. In addition, walkable car-free neighbourhoods, with attractive housing and ample amenities are in high demand in the US. Some of the 'urban villages' are developing as such.  The objection is that these are 'walkable islands', rising in an environment that is anything but walkable. So residents always have one or two cars in the car park for when they leave the neighbourhood, as good metro or train connections are scarce. Nor are these kinds of neighbourhoods paragons of a mixed population; rents tend to be well above the already unaffordable average.
The answer of the question in the header therefore is: locally and slowly

Herman van den Bosch's picture #Citizens&Living
Xander Bakker, Community Manager at Green Innovation Hub, posted

Vennster winnaar van Green Innovation Hub Contest 202

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Groepsfoto van alle deelnemers en aanwezigen tijdens de Green Innovation Hub Contest 2024 in Almere.

Almere, 18 april 2024 – Scale-up Vennster uit Nijkerk is de winnaar van de Green Innovation Hub Contest 2024. In deze wedstrijd presenteerden negen start-ups en scale-ups hun innovatieve oplossing voor een duurzame en inclusieve leefomgeving. Met hun methode en intelligente participatie app Parta wist Vennster de jury te overtuigen om hun product samen met de inwoners van Almere in te zetten voor de Almeerse woonwijken Hortus en Pampus.

De sociale app stelt een gemeente in staat om een brede doelgroep te bereiken, dit gaf uiteindelijk de doorslag om met de winst er vandoor te gaan. Het product zal verder ontwikkeld worden in samenwerking met de gemeente Almere en andere organisaties die betrokken waren bij de contest. Ook wint de scale-up een reis naar de Smart City World Congress 2024 in Barcelona, de productie van een eigen bedrijfsfilm en krijgen zij begeleiding om het bedrijf verder te ontwikkelen.

Partner en eigenaar Lonneke Dikmans van Vennster nam de Golden Award in ontvangst: “Wij zijn heel blij dat we hebben gewonnen, omdat het een erkenning is van onze missie. Wij willen zoveel mogelijk mensen in Nederland met elkaar in contact te brengen met onze methode en app en daarmee maatschappelijke uitdagingen oplossen, zoals de energietransitie.”

GIH afbeelding 1
Vrnl: Lonneke Dikmans (eigenaar en partner bij Vennster) ontvangt de Golden Award van Lisa van der Heijden (adviseur community management FDS & Digilab bij Realisatie IBDS) en Geert-Jan Put (hoofd economische ontwikkelingen bij Gemeente Almere).

Jaarlijkse wedstrijd voor duurzame startups en scaleups
In april 2023 werd de eerste editie van de Green Innovation Hub Contest vanuit de Green Innovation Hub georganiseerd. Civity uit Amersfoort ging er toen met de hoofdprijs vandoor. Ook volgend jaar zal er weer een contest worden uitgeschreven. De Green Innovation Hub is een samenwerking tussen Gemeente Almere, Provincie Flevoland en VodafoneZiggo.

Nico Bettings, director Fixed Network (VodafoneZiggo) licht toe: “De manier waarop we werken, wonen, leven en communiceren met elkaar verandert in een hoog tempo. Nieuwe innovaties zijn daarbij essentieel. Ik vind Vennster hier een fantastisch voorbeeld van. Ik hoop dat deze prijs hen een duwtje in de goede richting geeft, met alle expertise die in de hub aanwezig is.”

Innovatiekracht in Almere
In heel Nederland, maar zeker in Almere, is de roep om duurzame en innovatieve leefoplossingen groot. De komende tien jaar zullen er één miljoen huizen worden gebouwd en nieuwe wijken ontstaan, inclusief de gehele infrastructuur. Het doel is deze gebieden zo duurzaam en toekomstbesteding mogelijk neer te zetten. Daaromis de Green Innovation Hub in 2023 neergestreken in Almere en richt de wedstrijd zich op innovaties die in deze nieuwe woongebieden toegepast kunnen worden.

Geert Jan Put, hoofd economische ontwikkelingen bij Gemeente Almere licht toe: “We zitten qua gebiedsontwikkeling in de grootste transitie van de afgelopen jaren. Almere groeit met meer dan twintig procent per jaar. Onze stad is daarmee de proeftuin van innovaties die bijdragen aan een toekomstbestendige en duurzame woonomgeving. De oplossingen die tijdens de Green Innovation Hub Contest zijn gepresenteerd, dragen ieder op hun eigen manier bij aan een duurzame en natuur inclusieve stad. Ik blijf de organisaties met interesse volgen.”

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Vlnr: Danny Frietman (Green Innovation Hub), Harm Dijkstra (Provincie Flevoland), Nico Bettings (VodafoneZiggo), Caspar de Jonge (DMI-ecosysteem), René Visser (Green Innovation Hub/VodafoneZiggo) en Geert-Jan Put (Gemeente Almere) na ondertekening samenwerking Dutch Metropolitan Innovations en Green Innovation Hub (van links naar rechts).

Volgende fase Green Innovation Hub
De Green Innovation Hub is onlangs verhuisd naar gebouw Floor aan de Hospitaaldreef in Almere. De finale van de Green Innovation Hub Contest vond hier plaats. In het gebouw is tevens tijdens de avond het CityLab Almere geopend waar Vennster hun product kan presenteren aan geïnteresseerde bedrijven, overheids- en onderwijsinstellingen binnen en buiten Almere. Met het nieuwe kantoor is de grootte van de hub bijna vertienvoudigd. Per 1 juli komt daar zelfs 1000 m2 extra ruime bij. Daarmee kan het nieuwe gebouw worden opengesteld aan startups en scaleups die nog kantoorruimte zoeken. Geïnteresseerden kunnen zich via de website van de Green Innovation Hub kenbaar maken.

Over de Green Innovation Hub
De Green Innovation Hub is een broedplaats voor ontmoeting, samenwerking en innovatie. Partijen ontwikkelen digitale oplossingen voor een gezondestadsomgeving, lokale voedselzekerheid, mobiliteit, circulair bouwen, energiedistributie en sociale verbondenheid tussen stadsbewoners. Gezamenlijke innovaties worden gevalideerd en opgeschaald op speciale ‘greenfield’ locaties. De Green Innovation Hub is een open ecosysteem van het bedrijfsleven, overheden en onderwijs.

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AMS Institute, Re-inventing the city (urban innovation) at AMS Institute, posted

Join AMS Institute's Scientific Conference, hosted by TU Delft, Wageningen University & Research, MIT and the City of Amsterdam.

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Do you want to learn from and network with the best researchers and scientists working to tackle pressing urban challenges?
AMS Institute, is organizing the AMS Scientific Conference from April 23-25 at the Marineterrein, Amsterdam, to address pressing urban challenges. The event is organized in collaboration with the City of Amsterdam.
The conference brings together leading institutions in urban research and innovation, thought leaders, municipalities, researchers, and practitioners to explore innovative solutions for sustainable development in Amsterdam and other global cities. 
Keynotes, research workshops, learning tracks, and special sessions will explore the latest papers in the fields of mobility, circularity, energy transition, climate adaptation, urban food systems, digitization, diversity, inclusion, living labs experimentation, and transdisciplinary research.
Attendees can expect to gain valuable insights into cutting-edge research and engage in meaningful discussions with leading experts in their field. You can see the full program and all available sessions here.
This year's theme is 'Blueprints for messy cities? Navigating the interplay of order and messiness'. 
The program
Day 1: The good, the bad, and the ugly
Keynotes by Paul Behrens of Leiden University and Elin Andersdotter Fabre of UN-Habitat will be followed by a city panel including climate activist <strong>Hannah Prins</strong>. The first day concludes with a dinner at the Koepelkerk in Amsterdam: you're welcome to join our three-course meal with a 50 euro ticket.
Day 2️: Amazing discoveries
Keynotes by Carlo Ratti of MIT and Sacha Stolp of the Municipality of Amsterdam discuss innovation and research in cities. <strong>Corinne Vigreux</strong>, co-founder of TomTom, and Erik Versnel from Rabobank will participate in the city panel.
Day 3️: We are the city
Keynotes by Paul Chatterton of Leeds University and Victor Neequaye Kotey Deputy Director of the Waste Management Department of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, Ghana. They discuss how we shape the future of our cities together. This will be followed by a city panel including Ria Braaf-Fränkel of WomenMakeTheCity and prof. dr. Aleid Brouwer of the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.
To buy tickets: You can secure your conference tickets through our website.
Dinner tickets: On April 23 we’re hosting a dinner at the Koepelkerk in Amsterdam. Tickets for this can be added to your conference pass or bought separately. 

AMS Institute's picture #Mobility

This online community is established by Amsterdam Smart City, a network consisting of 27 public and private partners that are convinced that necessary changes for the Metropolitan Area Amsterdam can only be achieved through collaboration. At Amsterdam Smart City, we are committed to use smart technologies in a responsible way to help solve urban challenges. We bring our partners together and facilitate collaboration concrete issues within the following themes: energy, mobility, circularity and digitisation.

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