WAAG SOCIETY (Netherlands)

STICHTING Waag Society

Profile of the organisation

Waag Society is an interdisciplinary non-profit media lab researching and developing new technology, art and culture. Its mission is to provide meaning and give direction to the role of technology in society. In interdisciplinary teams and in close co-operation with end-users it develops technology that enables people to express, connect, reflect and share information, emotions and responsibilities. It hosts events and plays an active role in debates about technology and related issues like trust, privacy and intellectual property. Founded in 1994, Waag Society is part of the Dutch national infrastructure for the arts and culture, and a well-known participant in national and international collaboration programmes. Its roots are in the Digital City, the first online community aimed to question The Internet – in those days limited to science, large corporations and defense – and make it available for everybody. New technologies are explored and made usable, such as 4K, RFID, Augmented Reality, 3-D printing, Cradle to Cradle and new forms of gaming, participation and distributed cooperation. Waag Society works closely with end-users, often citizens. It is involved in several EU programs, amongst which are Express to Connect, meSch, Smart City SDK, Open Cities, Commons 4 Europe and APPS4EUROPE. In these programmes, Waag Society performs user research, is involved in co-creation practice and develops personal (location based) technologies. Furthermore it has the capability to host events that go beyond the scope of a research project, providing opportunities for generating impact from the project results to businesses and the society at large.


Role in the project

Developing pilots: concept, demonstrator and prototype development

Creativity processes, eg. Users as Designers: http://waag.org/en/project/users-designers

Leading the task about Hackathons and organization of the Hackathon in Amsterdam


Key Personnel

Tom Demeyer is currently Head of Technology at Waag Society, monitoring every project involving new technologies. Tom Demeyer started at Waag Society as a developer of realtime audiovisual software, at STEIM since 1987. Software like BigEye and Image/ine, but also hardware sensor interfaces like Sensorlab were at the cradle of real-time computer technology at performance art ( http://waag.org/en/person/tom ).

Karien Vermeulen is Head of Programme of Waag Society’s Creative Learning Lab, the educational department of Waag Society. Karien studied Psychology at the Free University and Political Science at the University of Amsterdam. From 2005 to 2011 she worked at Diversion, an Amsterdam based project office for social innovation, responsible youth and education projects. She developed Socratic conversation training for teachers, was involved in the design of the Academy of the City, organized shadow elections for school students in Amsterdam and started Blikopeners, the youth project of the Stedelijk Museum. At Waag Society Karien is involved in projects related to playful learning, mobile learning, learning through making, citizen science and embodied learning ( http://waag.org/en/person/karien )

Dick van Dijk is Creative Director at Waag Society. Creator of interactive concepts, design research and user involvement, and monitoring the development of the actual ‘thing’. Interested in the crossover between virtual and physical interactions, in creating a narrative space, a place for imagination. He worked on MuseumApp, Storyville storytelling apps, Scottie and Operation Sigismund. Dick is co-author of several publications like ‘Users as Designers’ and ‘Waarde van Verbondenheid’ (Dutch), on social connectedness. Dick has a background in Business Economics and History of Art and is currently extending his creative skills in the context of an Arts Academy. Dick is part of the Fontys Media Lectorate/Fontys FutureMediaLab( http://waag.org/en/person/dick )

Marise Schot works since May 2011 as a concept developer at Waag Society. Marise has studied and taught at the Technical University of Delft and is currently also active as a coach. She is involved in several health-care projects, where she gathers user requirements and develops these into design and development guidelines as well as concepts ( http://waag.org/en/person/marise )

Frank Kresin has been Programme Manager at Waag Society since 2006, and from 2009 holds the position of Research Director. He is responsible for programme and project development in the fields of health care, applications for society, and e-culture, the public domain and education. Interests in the application of technology for social innovation, knowledge management and empowerment by means of new media. He is Board Member for Internet Society NL and The Mobile City.