Harmen van Sprang


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Harmen van Sprang, co-founder & CEO Sharing Cities Alliance , posted

Tech Talk: 'Metaverse & de publieke ruimte'

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Lopen we straks allemaal met een Augmented Reality-bril door de stad? Waarmee je in een oogopslag de route ziet die je moet lopen, of het social media profiel van jouw tegenligger op straat kunt zien? Hoe is het dan gesteld met onze privacy in de openbare ruimte? En als de fysieke en virtuele wereld zo met elkaar verbonden zijn, is het dan nog wel duidelijk of iets ‘echt’ is?

Praat mee over de kansen en uitdagingen van Extended Reality voor de publieke ruimte. Extended Reality is een verzamelterm voor Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) en Mixed Reality (MR) waarmee virtuele 3D werelden kunnen worden gecreëerd.

De toepassingen van Extended Reality zijn volop in ontwikkeling. Het lijkt een kwestie van tijd voordat deze een rol gaan spelen in ons dagelijks leven. Zo is het denkbaar dat Augmented Reality-brillen ons gaan ondersteunen in het onderwijs en op de werkvloer. Daarnaast is het denkbaar dat bedrijven virtuele lagen en toepassingen op de publieke ruimte projecteren waardoor deze voor iedereen verandert.

Daarom gaan we in gesprek met experts, onderzoekers en Amsterdammers over de mogelijke en wenselijke rol van Extended Reality. Gezamenlijk zoeken we een antwoord op de volgende vraag: hoe blijft de publieke ruimte een plek van en voor iedereen?


  • Geert-Jan Bogaerts, Voorzitter van PublicSpaces
  • Stefan Roolvink, Onderzoeker bij Rathenau Instituut
  • Rivke Jaffe, Hoogleraar Stadsgeografie bij Universiteit van Amsterdam
  • Esther Hammelburg, Hogeschool van Amsterdam
  • Sebastiaan Crul, Onderzoeker bij FreedomLab
  • Joris Haverkort, Director Microsoft Technology Center bij Microsoft
  • Edo Haveman, Hoofd Public Policy Netherlands bij Meta


  • Timo Nieuwenhuis, onderzoeker bij Digitalisering & Innovatie, Gemeente Amsterdam
  • Harmen van Sprang, co-founder van de Sharing Cities Alliance
Harmen van Sprang's picture Meet-up on Apr 19th
Harmen van Sprang, co-founder & CEO Sharing Cities Alliance , posted

Metaverse & The City

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We are excited to invite you to join us for our next virtual ‘Metaverse & The City’ roundtable conversation on 24 January 2023 from 16.00 - 17.00 CET.

This specific session will focus on co-creating a ‘Metaverse & The City’ Manifesto: a continuous document that outlines the values, principles, and goals that should guide the development and use of the metaverse in our cities. The metaverse has the potential to transform how we live, work, and play, and we believe that it will have a significant impact on urban life in the coming years. It’s essential to have a shared vision for its future. 

We are currently assembling a panel of speakers who will share their insights and lead the discussion, and we hope that you will bring your own perspective and ideas to the table as well.

The roundtable takes 1 hour. It will be held via Zoom and is open to all interested participants. To RSVP and receive the link to join the call, please RSVP by mid-January 2023.

Like to share your ideas and suggestions already leading up to the roundtable, please let us know. We look forward to hearing from you and building a manifesto that reflects the diverse perspectives and aspirations of the metaverse community and beyond.

We hope you can join us for what promises to be an inspiring and insightful session.

This roundtable is the result of close collaboration with our knowledge partners: New York University, Cornell Tech, and The Hague School of Applied Sciences.

Harmen van Sprang's picture Online event on Jan 24th
Harmen van Sprang, co-founder & CEO Sharing Cities Alliance , posted

Roundtable 'Sharing Cities: Shaping Tomorrow' (free)

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We need to see opportunities (including the growing momentum for building back better and accelerating transformation processes) as much as thinking of challenges. This roundtable aims to provide a creative and refreshing opportunity to focus on chances more than only challenges. We will explore how to think of opportunities, of ways forward, of hope and ambition. We want to also investigate how sharing cities are connecting and merging with different agendas and topics in Europe and around the world.

Harmen van Sprang's picture Online event on Nov 16th
Harmen van Sprang, co-founder & CEO Sharing Cities Alliance , posted


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The landscape of mobility has been in motion for some time now, but the current pandemic is accelerating a shift towards new types of transportation. Is this just a temporary occurrence or will we see a fundamental change in the way we move? As we start to leave our homes again, options to move around are limited. Our cities cannot handle more cars and the capacity of public transport is reduced dramatically. How do we keep ourselves mobile while maintaining enough distance from each other?

In several cities around the world, measures are being taken to give more space to people. Will pedestrians and cyclists get more freedom to move after the pandemic is over? There is a global bicycle boom but has the bike really become a simple, safe, sustainable, and healthy form of transport? And, what about cars. At this stage, you might prefer your own car (if you have one) over public transportation, but will this be different once we can safely sit in the same bus or train again? Will we need fewer cars if part of society continues to work from home? And what roles might spatial planning and emerging technologies play when looking at transportation in urban areas in the years ahead? Let’s explore the path forward together and reshape mobility in our cities.

Harmen van Sprang's picture Online event on Jul 16th
Harmen van Sprang, co-founder & CEO Sharing Cities Alliance , posted


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If there is one sector that has been sacrificing itself to flatten the COVID-19 curve, it is tourism. Cities specifically have experienced the collapse of an industry that had been growing for decades. How will the industry resurrect itself? What will change and what will stay the same? What is a tourist in the post-pandemic city, what do they want, and how can cities accommodate this? Are crowds still acceptable or will we see a “waterbed effect”? Will there be more “staycations” and local travel? What is the value of tourism for cities? What does this mean for urban planning? Could there be a shift from mass tourism to a city focused on quality and well-being? Will digital tourism gain ground and what does it look like? Together with our guest speakers, April Rinne and Spiros Pengas, we will explore a variety of topics around tourism and travel. We invite you to join this exciting webinar and actively be part of predicting what the post-pandemic city could look like with a turnaround of tourism.

Harmen van Sprang's picture Online event on Jul 2nd
Harmen van Sprang, co-founder & CEO Sharing Cities Alliance , posted


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The world of work is rapidly changing. While automation and innovation were already disrupting our jobs, the current pandemic is accelerating this drastic development. New dilemmas arise. To what extent will people still convene in person? Will this be the end of “office centricity”? Will this lead to a decline of “city centricity”, too? How will these changes affect our work-life balance? How much office space do we actually need in a (post) pandemic era? How will urban business environments adapt? And should we bracing ourselves for widespread job losses or will we rise again and find new ways towards resilience? Although there are challenges, we will use this webinar to explore opportunities and come up with insights and ideas together to be able to embrace the current state of flux and fix the post-pandemic future of work.

Harmen van Sprang's picture Online event on Jun 18th