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Urban Trend Hunter
Nathalie Jager
www.urbansignature.nl

Grassroots projects are an interesting phenomenon. In Europe, it seems that these movements are more and more used to boost city dynamics: local areas regenerate by the spark of energy that these projects ignite. As an Urban Trend Hunter, I continously search for the initiatives which are the topic of your workshop. In other words: I signal, meet, hunt for innovative projects, visionary urban experts and triggering trends. Lately, I have put together the best examples in the e-zine Urban Signature that I founded with 2 colleagues of mine. We called this trend Guerilla in the City. I invite you to have a look (by simply clicking on the link under my name below).

City dynamics are a complex interactive system. After all, the dynamics of a city live or die by surprising twists. You can't predict in advance which places or facilities are going to be a success, so you mostly just have to try things out. Guerrilla is one way of doing this. The vibe in the city is created by people, their initiatives, interactions, events, decorations and green spots. In the magazine we pictured residents, entrepreneurs, designers, architects, event organisers, retailers, town planners, trendwatchers and marketers who give their most appealing examples of the guerrilla trend and examine what transience means for the city. The conclusion: transience is often a way of being able to experiment freely and without fear. And some temporary experiments are so successful that they are a new beginning in themselves. That's how guerrilla fits into urban development.

Exploring initiatives of the so-called 'creative class' (refering also to Mr. Richard Florida's book The Rise of the Creative Class, amongst others), I use this input for trend lectures, advicing C-level management and helping them to innovate. Moreover, with the enthusiastic team I gathered around me, we are ready to launch our creative design projects on demand.
I would be happy to engage in your workshop, to inspire, to spark the discussion and to help participants to yield new insights. My idea of doing this, could be, for example, with a trend lecture. But other possibilities might also be interesting to help the participants to get to their goal: often, a fresh overview of pictures taking in the city by a foreigner lead to constructive realizations and different angles to approach an assumed problem. As we state in the e-zine Urban Signature: when considering an architectural solution, please do consider that the solution may not be a building.

In any case, feel free to explore what's hip and happening and to join our platform for a community of like-minded urban pioneers.

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