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Rotterdam 6 — 7 Dec It's time for a system reboot.

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


ThingsCon is a 2 day event, packed with talks, workshops and other events.

Thu, Dec 6

Doors open 8:30h, opening 9:30h
9:45-10:30h: keynotes
10:45-12:45h: workshop round 1
13:00-15:00h: workshop round 2
15:15-17:15h: workshop round 3
17:30h keynote
18:00h pitches student hack challenge
19:00h drinks, award ceremony
Whole day: demos and more

Fri, Dec 7

Doors open 8:30h, opening 9:30h
9:45-10:45h: keynotes
11:00-13:00h: workshop round 4
14:00-17:30h: keynotes
17:30h: closing and drinks
Whole day: demos and more

More details


All the 2018 Workshops


Our speakers of 2018

Workshop hosts

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Practical Info

Date and time

thursday, 6 dec. 2018, 10:00 – friday, 7 dec. 2018, 20:00 (CET)


Bluecity 100 Maasboulevard, 3063 NS Rotterdam