The Independent School for the City is a school in, of, and for the city. It builds on the conviction that strategies for the city - architectural and economic, spatial and social - should be based on real, first hand, empirical research. The Independent School for the City offers a variety of post-graduate educational programmes ranging from shorter one-day workshops and masterclasses, one or two-week studio's to an intensive 3 month programme on contemporary Urbanism. Below we'll give you and overview of our upcoming activities.
Activist Ukrainian embroidery with Bogdana Postrygan - Postponed
In our series of DIY workshops, we will now be looking into the centuries old but very now tradition of Vyshyvanka, the famous embroidery technique from Ukraine. Apart from telling stories and being connected to different regions, a Vyshyvanka is believed to be a talisman, bringing luck and protection to the person wearing the garment. Especially now, the shops that are selling Vyshyvanka's are busy, selling clothing that gives people strength. The embroiderers have presently shifted to ‘embroidering’ camouflage nets to protect Ukrainian soldiers. During the Vyshyvanka workshop led by Bogdana Postrygan, the cultural language, and meanings of Vyshyvanka are introduced and explained, and different stitches and colours are tried out in an individual sampler. Then a collective design is made that will apply the language of Vyshyvanka to a camouflage net and thus raise the tradition to a form of resistance. More info here
FEB 2023 - A two-week studio exploring urban planning for a superdiverse city
Because of the port and its connection with the rest of the globe, Rotterdam has attracted people from all over the world for decades already. Nowadays over 170 different nationalities call the city their home. The population has become so diverse that Rotterdam has become part of a worldwide family of Majority-Minority cities – meaning that more than half of the population has a migration background. And, not just the number of nationalities has increased: as generations pass, also the diversity within the different migrant groups has become increasingly complex. This Superdiversity, makes the city interesting, dynamic and attractive, but also creates social tensions. There are huge differences in income, housing situation and development opportunities between the various groups in the city, which is beginning to show signs of segregation. In these two weeks, we will introduce simple tools of urban research and urban design, to present the city with an entirely different masterplan. Based on the fact that urban planning is too important to be left to urban planners, we will go on the streets to observe and ask people for their ideas and wishes for this part of the city. We will study the history of the location and see if it will give us inspiration for a grand redesign. Combined with our own ideas, dreams and knowledge about our favourite places, we will work on an urban strategy to turn this part of the city into a real City of Comings and Goings. More info here
April 2023 - A two-week studio exploring the impact of 2,5 degree temperature rise on life in the city.
Cities all around the world, have the ambition to become green, sustainable and resilient. We see projects being developed to transform car-dominated cities into attractive and green environments for all their inhabitants, new forms of energy production are developed to power our houses and industries, and various measures are taken to deal with sea-level rise. But is it enough? Climate scientists have predicted that if we continue at the current pace with climate measures, we will still end up on a planet that is between 2° and 3° hotter at the end of this century. The rising temperature will probably cause extreme weather phenomena, substantial sea level rising, biodiversity loss, food insecurity, large migration streams, social upheaval and political reactions. How will our offspring live in these new unmapped circumstances, how will their cities work, how will their life feel? In this studio we will map out the predicted effects of temperature rise on the Netherlands, on the City of Rotterdam and on a number of very specific places in the city. After exploring these effects, we will then use our collective knowledge and that of our guest speakers and scientific literature, to imagine how we can mitigate the negative effects of global climate change and what is needed to make life livable in a city that suffers its consequences. More info here