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Martijn de Waal

Martijn de Waal (1972) is a writer and researcher focusing on the relation between digital media and urban culture, with a specific interest in public space.

I am currently working as a professor (lector) at the Lectorate of Play and Civic Media at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences. I’m also the head of research for the faculty of Digital Media and Creative Industries at that university.

Formerly I worked as an assistant professor in Media Studies at the University of Amsterdam. I hold a PhD (2012) from the University of Groningen, where I was a member of the research group of practical philosophy, and the digital media & urban public space programme. In 2009 I spent a semester as a visiting scholar at the M.I.T. Center for Civic Media.

In November 2016 De Platformsamenleving (The Platform Society) was published, a book I co-authored with Jose van Dijck and Thomas Poell (An English version is in the planning for 2017/18). In 2014 I wrote The City as Interface (Rotterdam: Nai010 Publishers), a book on the relation between digital media and the urban public sphere. Other key articles include Owning the city: New media and citizen engagement in urban design (co-authored with Michiel de Lange) and The Ideas and Ideals in Urban Media Theory (published in Foth. et. al. From Social Butterfly to Engaged Citizen, Cambridge: MIT Press 2012).

With Michiel de Lange, in 2007 I founded TheMobileCity.nl, an international think tank and research network on New Media and Urban Culture. Over the last few years we have organized a variety of conferences and workshops, in amongst other AmsterdamRotterdamShanghai and Shenzhen.

Some of my recent activities and research projects include The Hackable City, a research project on collaborative citymaking in the Network Society, and Design & The City, a four day event I curated on citizen-centered design approaches for the smart city.

In the past I have worked as a journalist for a broad variety of Dutch media such as de Volkskrant and VPRO Radio, served as a member of the board of the Dutch Media Fund and organized various workshops on digital media and interactive storytelling. I also contributed to Neville Mars study The Chinese Dream with a travelogue.

Martijn is moderator and panelist in the session Architects vs Platforms

Program Day 1

Our program on Thursday the 12th

Day 1 of Thingscon 2019 we will shape the future narratives of the responsible IoT and beyond together. You can dive deep with peers, thought leaders, innovators, and researchers from the ThingsCon community and beyond:

Full program

Program Day 2

Our program on Friday the 13th

Day 2 of Thingscon 2019 is about the current state of the responsible IoT. You can get inspiration from thought leaders and practitioners from the field, get hands-on with the latest tools & insights and be part of the leading discours. To end Thingscon will present a State of the Responsible IoT in 2019:

Full program

Tickets & info

12 / 13 December, Rotterdam | Get your tickets now!

Date and time

Thursday, 12 dec. 2019, 09:00 – 19:00 (CET)
Friday, 13 dec. 2019, 09:00 – 20:00 (CET)


Het Nieuwe Instituut
25 Museumpark, 3015 CB Rotterdam (map)


Get your ticket!

Speakers & hosts

Our speakers & hosts

We are happy to announce our keynote speakers and hosts for sessions and workshops. These include:

Marleen Stikker
Tracy Rolling
Heather Wiltse
Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino
Klasien van de Zandschulp
Mirena Papadimitriou
Davide Gomba
Wouter Reeskamp

But wait, there are many more:

All our Speakers & hosts