How can we build a Fab City? Which steps should be taken to make our cities more resilient to future challenges?
The FabCity Summit, that will take place on Wednesday the 20th of April at the FabCity campus in Amsterdam, offers the perfect occasion to confront these questions and to work together on the creation of a new paradigm to transform the way we work and live in cities.
The Summit will see the participations of numerous members of the FabCity network, an international think tank comprising different figures, such as civic leaders, FabLab champions, urbanists and innovators who work collectively on the same goal: changing the persistent paradigm of the current industrial economy.
The Fab City project, initiated by the the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia, the MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms and the Fab Foundation, builds on the ideals of the FabLab, such as connectivity, culture and creativity, and applies them to the city level, with the aim of developing locally productive and globally connected self-sufficient cities. As explained in the FabCity Whitepaper (PDF avilable here), the new urban model will involve a transformation in the way cities source and use materials, evolving from a “Products In Trash Out” (PITO) to a “Data In Data Out” paradigm. This means shifting “from a linear model of importing products and producing waste to a spiral innovation ecosystem in which materials flow inside the city and informations on how things are made circulate globally”. The new economy envisaged in the FabCity is therefore based on “distributed data and manufactured infrastructure”.
By working on the development of new urbanization paradigms FabCity and FabLab are providing a fundamental contribution to the broader research for new models of sustainable urban development which is being stimulated at global level through the UN Habitat III conferences and the implementation of a New Urban Agenda. As the global community becomes aware of the need to work on sustainable urbanization to deal with the growth in urban population (estimated by the UN to achieve 66% of the global population by 2050, as shown in data available here) and with the future challenges deriving from this trend, the European Union is working in the same direction with the establishing of the EU Urban Agenda as one of the objectives of the Dutch Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
The creation of the FabCity campus for urban innovators and the commitment of the city of Amsterdam to join the Fab Cities network is better understood within this context, and gives us a positive example of how global and collective goals can better be achieved through the collaboration of different actors who share the same aim and can bring new perspectives and ideas in the debate.
The Fab City Summit offers a great occasion to work in this direction, through the participation of many relevant contributors in three different events: The Experts Meetings, aiming at drafting a Fab City Manifesto, the Public Dialogue, focusing on the evolution from FabLabs to Fab Cities and the Road Map Workshop, an occasion to set out the work that will be undertaken in the coming years.
LabGov will be present at the Summit, represented by Professor Christian Iaione, who will participate in the discussions alongside with numerous members of the Fab City network, such as Tomas Diez, urbanist, Fab City Laboratory Leader and director of the Fab Lab Barcelona at the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia (IAAC), Neil Gershenfeld, professor at the MIT Boston and director of the MIT’s Center for Bits&Atoms, Vincente Guallart, former Chief Architect of the City Council of Barcelona and Co-founder of the IAAC, and many others (here the complete list of contributors) .
Click here to access the complete FabCity events’ program.
Mercoledì 20 Aprile 2016 si terrà ad Amsterdam il FabCity Summit, un incontro all’interno del quale numerosi membri del FabCity network saranno portati a mettere in campo le proprie idee per raggiungere un obbiettivo comune, quello di cambiare il nostro modo di vivere e lavorare nelle città. Trasformare una città in una FabCity significa abbandonare l’attuale paradigma economico e lavorare verso lo sviluppo di città autosufficienti che siano localmente produttive e globalmente connesse.