[Hacking] What Design Can Do 2014 – Breakout session

I was invited to lead a workshop for one of the ‘breakout sessions’ of the (always pretentious) What Design Can Do conference in Amsterdam (2014). My condition for participating was the possibility of making my ‘workshop’ in the public space (in front of the Schouwburg, fancy theatre where the conference takes place), thus allowing for a wider participation of public and ‘breaking up’ part of (what I consider) the elitist character of the conference.

The session was entitled ‘What Design Can Do for Public Space’, and it started by going to the Leidseplein (square in front of the theatre) with the participants to ‘claim’ a space to have a ‘forum’ in. That space happened to be in front of a billboard with propaganda for the (by then) upcoming european elections, and was marked with tape on the floor with lines and a text that read ‘Corruption free!’. This space became the context for a discussion about the possibility (and desirability?) of alternative ways of democratic organization.

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