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CO.LABORATIONS | Partnerships in Media and Culture


20 - 21 April 2017
Het Nieuwe Instituut, Museumpark 25, Rotterdam

International City Gaming Conference

Games for Cities is a collaborative research and design project about the potential of games for inclusive city making.

On April 20/21 the project is hosting its first international conference, with leading ‘city-game’ design experts from around the world. The conference will be held in Rotterdam’s Het Nieuwe Instituut and is open to the public.

City-games are increasingly prevalent in the daily work of policy-makers, regulators, urban designers, smart city experts and architects. The Games for Cities programme contributes to this maturing field of city-making in two ways: by generating a critical and holistic overview of implemented city games, and by encouraging city-game designers to work closely with local governments. Organised by Play the City and partners in close collaboration with Het Nieuwe Instituut, this conference aims to bring Dutch city-gaming practices and international best practices into closer contact with one another.

This promises to be an intriguing conference with keynotes on how city-gaming is the future of city-making, as well as numerous city-game break-out sessions to experience this future for yourselves. You will get the chance to meet Paolo Pedercini from Molleindustria, Urban Think Tank’s Haris Piplas, Boston-based social designer Eric Gordon from Emerson’s Engagement LabThe Why Factory’sFelix Madrazo, and Ekim Tan from Play the City as the invited speakers at the conference. During the conference, 10 internationally active city-game developers will be present to run game sessions. Among these city-games are the future scenario building of refugee saturated Jordanian cities, playful renewable energy platforms for citizens, urban water games, and games that confront our own egos and identities regarding increasing urban densities.

We are proud to announce that the Mayor of Rotterdam, Mr. Ahmed Aboutaleb, will open the conference on Day 2. Partners of Games for Cities and Play the City are the Amsterdam University of Applied Science’s Play and Civic Media LabUtrecht University’s New Media Studies, TU Delft’s The Why Factory, and The Mobile City whose work will be featured during the conference. The Dutch Cities of AmsterdamUtrecht and Eindhoven have brought in and financed three Games for Cities cases, which will be explored in the conference.

The Games for Cities program has been made possible by the generous contributions of the Creative Industries Fund NL, as well as the three Municipalities mentioned above.


Day 1: 20 April 2017

19:30 Welcome and introduction by Dr. Ekim Tan
19.45 Keynote opening speaker: Paolo Pedercini, Molleindustria
20:15 Colloquy discussion involving audience Moderator: Dr. Michiel de Lange
21:00 End (Bar open)

Day 2: 21 April 2017
09:30 Doors Open + Coffee
10:00 Opening with Mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb
10:10 Launch of the ‘Play the City’ book
10:20 Introduction: Dr. Ekim Tan
10:30 Keynote: Prof. Eric Gordon, Engagement Lab
11:00 Case 1: An Inclusive Utrecht
11:15 Colloquy 1: Migration and City-Games
11:45 Break-out Session: 15 City-Games running in parallel by their designers in groups of 15-25

12:45-13:45 Lunch Break

13:45 Guest speaker: Haris Piplas, Urban Think Tank
14:15 Case 2: A Circular Amsterdam
14:30 Colloquy 2: Circularity and City-Games
15:00 Break-out Session: 15 City Games running in parallel by their developers in groups of 15-25

16:00-16:30 Coffee Break

16:30 Guest speaker: Felix Madrazo, Inter.National.Design
17:15 Case 3: A data-driven Eindhoven
17:30 Coloquy 3: Data, Information, Knowledge and City Games
18:00 Closing speaker

18:30 Drinks



GAMES FOR CITIES is an initiative of Play the City, a pioneering city-gaming practice based in Amsterdam (NL) and made possible through generous funding from Creative Industries Fund NL. The programme has been compiled together with Play the City’s knowledge partners: HvA Play and Civic MediaUU New Media StudiesTU Delft The Why Factory, and The Mobile City. For the content of specific events, partnerships are established with: City of AmsterdamCity of EindhovenCity of UtrechtPakhuis de ZwijgerHet Nieuwe Instituut, and Designhuis.