At the start of my membership of the Change Management research group at the The Hague University for Applied Sciences (THUAS) I proposed the existence of a The Hague Laboratory for Public Affairs. It was not to be the end of a design process, but the start of an exploration. The question was: what is it we have when there is such a laboratory?
A laboratory as an experiment. I logged lab procedures and published several ‘LAB-LOGs’. The process proved useful for the development of urban innovation laboratories in The Hague, a municipal government initiative in cooperation with -amongst others- THUAS. For the THUAS I currently am the quartermaster, starting labs together with city government and tying urban challenges with THUAS departments, researchers and what have you.
Urban innovation laboratories are nodes in a city wide infrastructure of moments and spaces offering the opportunity to tinker and experiment with issues that require collective consideration. The wisdom of the crowd if you want. The proposition is that the urban challenges we face cannot be delegated to experts. New generation urban neighbourhoods must facilitate the coming together of these experts with others who are committed to contribute to -for instance- ways to go forward in energy transition or the sustainable alleviation of poverty. I made a (Dutch language) documentary about these ‘InnoLabs’. It can been seen through youtu.be/vuKP_iOGKTk.
Current dynamics in the urban innovation laboratories already in operation justifies the actual bringing into existence of a The Hague Laboratory for Public Affairs. It is to be a space in which overarching public issues are explored. In order to root a laboratory in which matters that concern us all are tinkered with in sensible thought I am documenting the history of the lab in a publication. ‘The making of’ can be followed through https://indd.adobe.com/view/7457f4ed-8fc3-4a98-83f5-595da22ec080. It already provides for an insight in backgrounds. More than a few early LAB-LOG are part of the publication.
Do take care and patiently page through what there now is. More than a few pages are still empty but you will come across what I hope are useful texts, pictures and typography. I welcome comments.