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CitizensLab / A Lab Approach

C&C is very proud to be a member of the European Citizenslab.

Citizenslab is a participatory network of local actors of change from different sectors and context trying to generate systematic change from the root level and not just to tweak symptoms of what is not working. The underlying question is:

 ‘How can our diverse practices create a more meaningful quality of life in Europe’.

We use a so called Lab Approach to illuminate each other and let a new community intelligence emerge.  The key elements of a Lab Approach are:

  1. A shared longer term goal
  2. A core group that co-designs and co-hosts the process and navigates the complexity of the lab
  3. Series of experiments and prototypes where the new system is enacted in real-time
  4. A community of practices for a new system of influence

Tandem comes to Odessa

From 23 to 27 September, 140 members of the Tandem family, all participants of the three most recent Tandem programs, alumni like us and the Tandem team came together in Odessa.

With Tanztangente, our partner from Berlin, we shared our insights and experiences with the others during a very well received workshop.



SWAG (Share ideas, Work together, Act now, Get involved)

Within CitizensLab we work on a prototype to develop new models for education. We want to help children and young people to realise their full potential and to become active citizens. We address education by involving schools in the practices and integrating them in community life. We promote freedom in education and want to strengthen the rights of pupils to take responsibility for their learning processes as well as to advocate democratic participation to become part of decision-making processes in schools.  With partners from Budapest, Sofia, Frankfurt, Barcelona and Athens we started preparing a project called SWAG, trying to combine learning and active citizenship.

“This is not a Hotel”

Ed Santman and Monique Baan worked intensively in the first months of 2017, making a documentary with a group of inmates and prison staff at PI Sittard, a prison in the South of the Netherlands. The result is a very special portrait of the life behind the prison walls, it was filmed by the prisoners and the prison workers who collaborated as a team to produce this documentary.  Later this year we will work with the same group on a magazine which will involve augmented reality as a tool to add some of the scenes of the documentary.

See the trailer at:

or see the whole video at:


Making the Magazine

A group of young at risk at JP Heije institute in Oosterbeek worked on a magazine as a pilot for the Valmopris project. The teachers were Saskia Kettelarij and Sanne Willemsen.

With “Making the Magazine” they aimed to motivate these young people to contribute actively towards a common goal. The learners worked with photography, drawing, painting, writing and interviewing. In the first week all were researching what they like to do and what their talents are. This led to an editorial team and further division of tasks. Next the participants got creative and started to collect materials.

In the last week all material was made into one magazine with lay-out and graphic design. The final result was put together with the editorial team and printed in a limited edition so that the participants, teachers and the hosting organisation could disseminate them within their networks.


In April C&C was invited/selected to become one of the founding members of the European Citizens Lab.

Funded by the European Cultural Foundation, the Robert Bosch Stiftung and the Stiftung Mercator, this new initiative links artists, journalists, architects, politicians and change makers from all over Europe. The ambition is to create a common ground for cultural collaboration, showing that there is more that we, people from Europe share, than what divides us.

Citizen Lab will also promote and provide tools and expertise for social change to grass-root initiatives, thus driving participatory processes for change.

changes chances CLab

Real Life, partnermeeting in Bologna

Lots of dicussions during and after the partnermeeting of the Real Life project in Bologna. There was so much to discuss, two and a half days were hardly enough. But at the last day we really made a lot of progress and we all went home with clear ideas on how to continue with the project. In the next month we will frequently have Skype sessions to prepare the first training, that will take place in September in Rotterdam.

C&C Partnermeeting Bologna

New office

Very applicable, in “de Vrije Wolf” in Utrecht, a building that has been used as a prison from 1856 until very recently, we will be sharing an office with Click F1, our partner in the Real Life Project.