Challenging the City Scale
Wednesday 17 February 2016
Human cities/Challenging city scale 2014-2018 reveals its full agenda for 2016. 

Dear Human Citizen, 

HUMAN CITIES 2014-2018, co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union, is significantly different in scale compared to the previous editions. It has established a truly European and international frame in order to create the best place to be for engaging design-driven initiatives to take place within public space and have a truly and positive impact on professionals and general public. In 2016, the European network of partners composed of 12 cities will develop people-driven initiatives and competencies and enlarge the audience by being part in the main design events in Europe welcoming several exhibitions, and acting in close relationship with other design networks in Europe and in the world. Our main attention goes to the actual Human Cities Research Project (State of the Art and Case Studies) which have now been structured, offering both inspiring cases for urban experimentation, and an analysis on the current bottom-up urban design movement and social innovation at the European scale. This research, related to co-briefing sessions,  Experiment Labs and the Master classes have a stronger objective: a deep legacy to the local communities. It is even more itinerant and open to various audiences, thanks to the touring exhibition concept and digital catalogue which goes with it.


Would you like to participate yourself and be part of the Human Cities Community? 
Human Cities Digital Catalogue is coming out in April 2016! Install the App, like and share images and videos, and enjoy it!
Do not miss a thing! 
Follow HUMAN CITIES on Facebook 
and now also on Instagram and twitter (@humancitieseu). 
Before we accelerate the programme around Human Cities Activities, we wrote a Story and made a snapshot of the past activities, involving a few of our 'historical' partners. You can read more on it here: 'A brief resumé of the past'
Agenda 2016 

Our partners, Polimi in Milan activate the public space 'La Piana' surrounding the Ringhiera theatre through the involvement of the Polimi Masterclass 'Temporary Urban Solutions' and the experience of the theatre company. It is a result of a community survey by the Masterclass which happened last year. A first experimentation lab developing prototypes took place on 30 January 2016. The second lab is planned during the Design Week in Milan, on 14th April till 17th April 2016.

“Human Cities_Challenging the City Scale/ Milano”
An Interactive Experiment Lab, will be hosting Other European Stories during the Milan Design Week.
expo: 12th -17th April 2016, Ex Ansaldo, Via Tortona 54, 20144, Milano, Opening time: 10 am-10 pm
lab: 12th April 2016 – 17th April 2016
tour: 15th April 2016, New Public spaces in Milan

Press Release download here.


The experimentations in Belgrade aim to improve the liveability of public spaces in their city. In May 2016 a series of experiments will be held in collaboration with THINKtent, Mjehur na Mrezi, and Belgrade Design Week Team. Sessions will take place with experts and inhabitants in three different locations to open a discussion on Belgrade public spaces and how to improve them.



In the city of Tallinn, the Association of Estonian Designers is creating and experimenting around resting space in the busy city. This year, the research, user testing and promotion of EXIT, urban asylum for short relaxing break will start. 



In Graz, Human Cities' partner fh-joanneum works on innovative solutions to encourage informal meeting and life on public space in Jakomini district using specific survey and observation methodologies and a strong measurement phase.

Experimentations: Living and Meeting informally in Graz
March 2016: beginning of survey phase by and with students of Master Exhibition Design and Bachelor Information Design. 
May 2016: experimentation labs/ Interventions and development of prototypes with local and international artists and experts.
May-July 2016: implementation and testing of prototypes. 
August-October 2016: evaluation.

Photo: Alice Holmberg examining Jakomini district by wearing eye tracking glasses during the co-creation briefing in Graz.



Saint-Etienne decided to give give a broader impact to Human Cities. Thanks to Cité du Design, local actors and design collectives are participating in an initiative named C.H.O.S.E (Collective Human Citizens Office of Saint-Etienne). In 2016-2017, 4 groups will mix their know-how and cross-disciplinary approaches to challenge the urban transformations in Saint-Etienne:
  • Dynamic Boutic !: investing vacant commercial spaces with local competences to test activities responding to social and economic issues in the Beaubrun district.
  • Mutability: actions accompanying the renovation period of Crêt de Roc district, favouring a changeable, adaptable and user-quality centred vision of urban project.
  • IRD sensitive Lab: narrating the challenging scales, perceptions and movements of a city under transformation.
  • Mynalab: documenting the process and fostering the capacity building of bottom-up processes of urban experimentions through the competences of Saint-Etienne and Lyon third places.


The experimentations in Cieszyn aim to improve an old part of the city as an opportunity for economic and cultural development with its various stakeholders and beneficiaries. The experimentation is taking place from January 2016 until the summer 2016.



Clear Village is working with local partners like sister organisation the Machines Room to further develop the Maker Mile. Launched during last year's Human Cities/Recode the City Festival curated by Thomas Ermacora, the Maker Mile is one square mile of open workshops, artist and design studios, fabricators, galleries, shops and businesses in the East End of London. The aim in 2016 will be to establish the Maker Mile as a powerful presence and brand that has the capacity to redefine and revitalise the local area of Hackney. 


 Saint-Etienne in Milan

Exhibition  'Saint-Etienne Changes Design, French Capital of Design' is taking place from 2 April until 12 September 2016 at BASE Milano (ex-Ansaldo) Zona Tortona next to the MUDEC (Museum of Cultures) – Within the framework the XXI International Exhibition Triennale di Milano “Design after Design”.

Human Cities/Challenging the City Scale is one of the projects shown in the Cité du design activities' section of this exhibition. It’s also interesting to note that the Human Cities_Challenging City Scale exhibition/ Milano  and Saint-Etienne Changes Design exhibitions will be presented in the same location during the Milan Design Week (12th -17th April 2016), with connected topics and shared moments. More info click here

Photo: Exhibited during the Biennale Design Saint-Etienne, this urban design prototype has been created by one of the student of the ESADSE and manufactured by TF URBAN, resulting of a co-creative workshop organized by TF URBAN, Pro Materia and ESADSE.

In 'Human Cities Toolbox' we elaborated on how previous festivals enabled citizens to take actions. 

More about strategies and methodologies that enable people can be read in the interview with Francois Jégou of Strategic Design Scenarios. What we found out was remarkably familiar to the purpose and strategy of the Human City Project today.

Human Cities Network is interacting with many other
Creative Cities (Design) of UNESCO
The network reaches until Shenzhen.  


This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This Newsletter reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.