We Own The City
Book Tour: Asia

CITIES Foundation published "We Own The City: Enabling Community Practice in Architecture and Urban Planning" May 2014. The book delves into 20 case studies of bottom-up development with the specific focus of highlighting how traditional top-down actors are adapting to work with increasingly active citizenry in urban development process management. Featured case studies are from from Amsterdam, Hong Kong, New York City, Moscow and Taipei, including interviews with top architects. After an initial launch in Amsterdam, We Own The City went on a world tour. This video captures We Own The City in Asia.

WASTED circular development
In 2015, CITIES’ project WASTED dives into local plastic waste reprocessing. In phase one, we will work with local community and designers in a Design Club focused on realizing a versatile neighborhood WASTED Laboratory.
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CITIES will be on the move in the coming weeks! Going to Lecce (Italy), NYC, Hong Kong and Taipei, we will be working to bring conceptual urban ownership into local projects, continually pushing for new urban development standards in the name of We Own The City.
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DAMn WeOwn tri-image
The publication We Own The City launched late May 2014. Here you can read reviews of the book. This page will be updated as reviews continue to come in.
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On the theme of We Own The City: Enabling Community Practice in Architecture and Urban Planning, CITIES hosted a Global Urban Blogger Competition to catalyze the discourse through stories from more cities. One urban explorer won €200, our new book and a spot on Skype at the book launch. Read more here.
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Blog comp madrid entry
How are top-down actors enabling bottom-up, people-driven initiatives in YOUR city? We posed this question to urban bloggers around the world. Read their stories from Lagos, Brussels, Port au Prince, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Madrid, Toronto, Vienna and Rennes here.
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Calling all urban bloggers! Join the global discussion – let’s break down boundaries of conventional urban development practices and push for inclusive people-driven progress! We want more voices on the theme of We Own The City. The winner will receive 200 Euros, a fresh copy of our new book, and a spotlight mention at our book launch, May 27th in Amsterdam.
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Food tour map crop
Nourish the body and mind – tantalizing your taste buds and learning about Amsterdam’s food history in an exploration of the beautiful city center today. Late April, we kick-off the 2014 Old Amsterdam Food Tour! Tours start the 23rd and 30th in both Dutch and English. Find out more!
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Issue 02:

Emerging Centers

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CITIES the magazine is looking for Urban Reporters
Deadline for submissions
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CITIES is looking for an intern! Do you want to work with us on our project WASTED?
Application deadline
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WASTED is a community laboratory for small-scale plastic waste reprocessing, located in Noorderpark, Amsterdam. WASTED aims to be an engine of Social Design, where social benefits of neighborhood activation coincide with and enforce aims of setting new sustainable standards for product design.
weownthe city
A global project aiming to re-institutionalize urban development in a more collaborative, innovative and effective fashion. We Own The City the publication launched 27 May 2014, featuring research in New York, Moscow, Amsterdam, Hong Kong and Taipei, and interviews with architects such as OMA, MVRDV, NEXT Architects and UN Studio.
OAFT-map-digital2enhacned final
Exploring historic food trails, tastes and traditions that past with present in Amsterdam's historic center.

FOODLOGICA Joined WOW Amsterdam’s Plantage Urban Farm event on the National Day of Sustainability to present our use of solar powered cargo e-bikes.
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Fall 2014, We Own The City World Tour lands in Taipei, sparking engaging discussion replete with local stories, bottom-up and top-down practices and everything in between.
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NYC we own the city launch books
September 29 2014, We Own The City launched in NYC, kick starting a dialogue better enabling citizens and city makers to practice inclusive, community-based urban development.
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Lecce ArtLab 4
As Lecce, Italy competes to be Capital of Culture 2019, CITIES presents in Lecce at ArtLab 2014, together with Pakhuis de Zwijger’s Egbert Fransen, to share and advise a new vision of contemporary ‘cultural management’.
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Research into urban waste management
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Branding sustainable cities

Research into branding of eco-cities and their implementation
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Polycentric cities

Research into cities that have multiple centres of activity
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Urban agriculture

Research into urban agriculture projects and farming within cities ( )
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We Own The City has expanded into a global project working directly with diverse citizen initiatives in five major cities to collectively produce CITIES’ upcoming book: "We Own The City: Enabling Community Practices in Architecture and Planning"
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Urban explorations


Precious Plastic
Precious Plastic: Dave Hakkens’ Localized Take On Plastic Reprocessing
Featured Artist
Plastic is precious, yet wasted abundantly. Dave Hakkens fills in where the big players cannot, offering innovative designs to bring small scale plastic recycling and processing into new materials to your own neighborhood.
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The Mira exterior
Hotel Spotlight: The Mira Hong Kong Speaks on Urban Contemporary Sustainability
Featured Article
How are hotels shaping environmental and social sustainability in cities? Here, we take an inside look, presenting an interview with The Mira Hong Kong, the city’s leading member of Design Hotels™, in thanks for their support of We Own The City book launch Hong Kong.
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Florie Salnot featured artist
Florie Salnot: Empowerment Through Design
Featured Artist
Designer and researcher Florie Salnot integrates empathetic research, inclusive design and waste reuse to co-create solutions that empower women and better people’s lives.
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NEWASTE: Innovators Who Don’t Re-Cycle, They PRE-Cycle
Featured Artist
Newaste overcomes energy expenditure and material degradation caught up in re-cycling processes by putting potentially wasted materials to good, sustained use. They call it PRE-cycling. Click to learn more here.
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