#COCREATE Design Festival 2018




The #cocreateDESIGN FESTIVAL is a new initiative of The Netherlands Consulate General which aims to celebrate and examine the power of design to tackle current socio-economic and environmental challenges within an African context. In collaboration with The Craft and Design Institute and Future Cape Town, the first edition of the initiative will be hosted under the theme “Beyond the Crisis.”


#cocreateDESIGN FESTIVAL Curator's Statement

Is a state of crisis our new normal?

It can easily be said that the world all over, not just South Africa / Africa, is in a state of crisis. At all levels. From food and water security to urbanisation and mobility, to economies and jobs, to the quality of the air we breathe and our social interactions. No country in the world is untouched by globalisation, growing inequalities and a planet under severe environmental stress.

By 2050, the global population is expected to grow by 2.2 billion people. More than half of the world’s population will be living in Africa, with 60% of Africans living in cities. How can we make African cities work? In the present and the future. How will we ensure enough water of a high quality, guarantee food for all, create quality jobs and income opportunities and support the mobility of millions of people in a more humane, sustainable and efficient manner?

As we take stock of this epoch, are we destined to live in permanent states of anxiety and fear which paralyses us? Or can we use it to inspire and command action?

It is said: Never let a good crisis go to waste.

We can’t go back.

So how do we move forward?

BEYOND THE CRISIS will bring the public and a set of actors and influencers together to engage directly and constructively with the crises facing cities within Africa. How can we use this turning point as an opportunity to form new collaborations, joint efforts, inspired designs and new tools for action?

How can we collectively use our creativity, intelligence, and resources to address the challenges of water and food security, as well as the human needs for mobility and access to opportunities? Can we bridge race, gender and class divides - do we need social cohesion more than ever before?

#cocreateDESIGN FESTIVAL-2018 aims to learn from the public, architects, artists, activists, educators, developers and politicians about what it means to act today to effect positive change. How do we become active agents rather than passive complainers? We would like to understand how we can, as collectives, overcome egos, outdated economic models, social divides and a seeming cycle of no progress.  

We would like to know about projects, future scenarios, innovations, and policies that favor long-term thinking over short term-solutions, and do not give up on improving the quality of life for billions on the African continent.

#cocreateDESIGN FESTIVAL-2018 will challenge you to think, design and act BEYOND THE CRISIS