Water is life

Amsterdammers love the water. What would Amsterdam be without its canals? But climate change and the increased use of its waters is one of the main threats to Amsterdam’s biodiversity and water quality. Think about the growing number of people swimming in the canals during hot summer days, longer periods of dryness but also our behavior when it comes to litter. In this lab we want to navigate a better understanding of this topic and identify which parties are or should be involved; from the municipality to the tourism industry. In partnership with Waternet, the goal of this lab is to illuminate how design can mobilise citizens, municipality and companies to act more responsibly and see what role design can play.


A Radical Collaboration Lab is a hands on design research experience, focused on gaining a deep understanding of a problem and at the same time developing new perspectives on it. This lab focused on new explorations, aiming to start an open and reflective discussion with everyone involved. The goal of this lab was to get a better understanding of the topic by collaboratively exploring desired design oriented futures together with problem owners, stakeholders and creatives.

Lab Partner


Waternet is a water company unique for its coverage of the entire water cycle for Amsterdam and surroundings. Next to proving a safe, clean and sufficient supply of water for human consumption and natural areas they are responsible for keeping dykes up to standard and keeping canals clean.

About the Radical collaboration Labs

In a one-day event, 200+ interdisciplinary participants worked closely with our partners to develop new paths for future design interventions, that we can share across the world – challenging the pressing issues we face today.

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