Guidelines for Urban Labs
The Urban Lab Kit guidelines are intended for team members and managers of urban labs and, more generally, for civil servants and facilitators in cities working with experimental urban governance processes to tackle complex challenges. They aim to support the everyday practice of collaboratively experimenting and learning how to create more sustainable and inclusive cities.
These guidelines do not provide a single definitive answer on ways to organize and run an urban lab or its experimental activities, but rather they offer, through frameworks and examples, guidance for ways to act in relation to, and reflect on, key issues.
It is the outcome of a collaborative effort between researchers and practitioners and has been tested with various potential user groups to improve the final version. Overall, the LAB kit consists of three types of questions to be answered in a single day interactive workshop.
Working together with researchers and other city officials in the URB@Exp research project has proven to be very fruitful for our local practices in Maastricht. Especially the reflexive exercises during the project meetings, the testing of the toolkit and discussions regarding the guidelines.
In the period 2017 - 2019, Maastricht-LAB will continue to function as a platform and catalyst for new urban development processes. But we still do not know how Maastricht-LAB will function after 2019. The guidelines and the toolkit will definitely be used for reorientation in the years to come: what should be the future goal of Maastricht-LAB, its functioning in practice and its organizational position?
And of course, Maastricht-LAB will continue to participate in the SMULLN project as well, in which we hope to further improve the toolkit and its usefulness.
Tim van Wanroij
Municipal Maastricht-LAB coordinator - 2014-2017