Food and a shared problem tend to connect people. A short overview of the co-creation process programstrategy Buikslotermeerplein.


During four co-creation sessions, set up as diners, a group of twenty stakeholders (local inhabitants, entrepreneurs and municipality surrounding the Buikslotermeerplein) got together in order to formulate a program strategy for the Buikslotermeerplein, situated in Amsterdam North. Each stakeholder involved, paid to be at the table and thus shared responsibility.


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During the first diner, the weaknesses and strengths of the area were debated and a metaphor for the area was formulated. The stakeholders described the area as the heart of ‘real’ Amsterdam North, different from the development surrounding the IJ-banks. For the participants, the redeveloped banks are no longer experienced as a part of Amsterdam North, but have become part of the centre of Amsterdam.

The second diner, the metaphor was the starting point. The stakeholders were asked to come up with ideas for concrete (temporary) programs that could lift up the image of the area and positively increase the use of it.

The results of the second diner were mirrored towards experts via a brainstorm session. Out of this, the design team came up with the concept: Home. The different focus locations in area could be seen as the different rooms of a house: the metro area as a front garden, the parking area as a hallway, the market as a kitchen and the shopping centre as a living room.

During the third diner, the concept of the house, the characteristics of the different spaces, and the potential for (temporary) programs were introduced. In smaller groups, the stakeholders went to the focus locations in the area and debated upon the concept and the suggested program. What would work and what wouldn’t? The conclusions were shared with the group over dessert.

In addition to the results of the stakeholders an ‘Ideas Festival’ was held during the weekly market. Here, additional ideas of users of the area were collected.

During the fourth and final diner the concept program strategy was presented and the stakeholders could give their final remarks. The stakeholders were furthermore asked in which program they could or would participate. The final diner thus ended with a concept program strategy and a first idea of who would be helping to bring the program into practice.


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Pictures Hans van der Vliet