Public Space & The Public Good

Public Space & The Public Good

Public Space & The Public Good is a research program that poses the question: how can we make the public good the leading factor in the design of public space.

Public Space & The Public Good

Public Space & The Public Good (Publieke Ruimte Publieke Zaak in Dutch) is the title of a research project initiated by Bart Lammers, Arnold Reijndorp and Simon Franke.

The project investigates the relation between public space and the public good. Both have been under pressure by various forces, such as burocratization and the failed economic liberalization of parts of the public sector.

At the same time we have witnessed a renewed interest in the public good or ‘res publica’. For instance in the recent debates about ‘ownership’ (about which we have written extensively before) and various examples of bottom-up city making, in which citizens have started to organize to address public affairs themselves.

As part of this program, The Mobile City investigated the role of digital media for the social organization of citizens around communal issues.

The research program investigates three case studies in which the relation between public space and the public good takes on new forms. Dus Architects will be developping a housing cooperation for the 21st century, Trancity will investigate new ways to develop the (social) program of urban neighborhoods. The Mobile City will research the ways new media can create ‘urban publics’ in new ways. That is: how do new media enable citizens to organize themselves in ‘publics’ that can address the public good? As such the project builds upon the upcoming book The City as Interface by The Mobile City-co founder Martijn de Waal.

Publication: Click. Like! Share.

The result of our research was published (in Dutch) in the publication Click. Like! Share. See here for more details

Event: Strategies for the Public Domain

The outcome of the research project will be discussed on Tuesday February 3 2015 in Pakhuis de Zwijger in Amsterdam. The evening will showcase the results of the three parallel research projects within the Public Space & The Public Good Program. It starts at 19:00. More information about the program can be found at the website of Pakhuis de Zwijger .

Research by Design: Schilderswijk den Haag

With Lustlab we explored the ways in which new media tools can enable citizens to discuss the function and working of the public spaces in their surroundings.

Binnen de Lijnen — 1:1 Heatmap from LUSTlab on Vimeo.

The Schilderswijk district in The Hague brings together many people from various backgrounds and ethnicities, with each of them using public space in his or her own way. Unfortunately, these different appropriations remain implicit most of the time. Yet, with new digital media, we can make these patterns visible and use them to map the gathering points of the community. This heatmap precisely offers such a visual representation – one highlighting the spatial organization of Schilderswijk’s social life.

A detailed analysis (in Dutch) can be found here.

About this project

Public Space & The Public Good is  an initiative by  Simon Franke, Bart Lammers, Arnold Reijndorp. It is funded by the Stimuleringsfonds Creatieve Industrie, het Pauwhoffonds en de Gemeente Den Haag. More information about the project as well as all three publications can be found here.