Mon 13 Mar 2017, 8:00PM Pakhuis de Zwijger, Amsterdam

Urban Stories Festival

Opening Night: The Act of Urban Journalism
Mon 13 Mar 2017, 8:00PM
Pakhuis de Zwijger
Piet Heinkade 179 , 1019 HC Amsterdam
Free admission, reservation required

Today, 54 percent of the world’s population lives in urban areas, a proportion that is expected to increase to 70 percent by 2050. Urbanisation is a fact, making cities worldwide an even more relevant topic to talk about. What does urban journalism look like today and how can we make it function as a tool to address and solve urban issues?

What 21st-century skills are needed by urban journalists nowadays? How can you use urban storytelling as a tool to create impact? Which urban stories successfully created change on a policy level?  This programme highlights important urban stories while at the same time looking into skills you need to share these city stories with a broad audience.

Join us during the official kick-off of Urban Stories Festival, celebrating the new urban journalist. With among others:


Gregory Scruggs is senior correspondent for independent journalism platform Citiscope and a specialist when it comes to covering urban issues worldwide. He is specialised in cities and culture in the Americas and previously lived and worked in Brazil. He speaks several languages and experiences the world as his home and cities as his biggest love.


The Future of Cities

Filmmaker Oscar Boyson has made quite an impression with his short documentary The Future Of Cities (2016) in which he looks at how different cities are approaching the future in a sustainable way – focusing on issues of technology, transportation, health and history. The project is a conversation starter first, a video second. Oscar wants to keep telling urban stories and building on these ideas. Knowledge is power!

The Urban Journalism Academy

Rome-based journalist Simone d’Antonio covers innovation, sustainability and urban issues. His stories appeared on Citiscope, Citylab and Guardian Cities. From a piece on how Turin is converting from a dead industrial area into an innovation hub, to an article that shines a light on how metropolitan cities are born in Italy – Simone is an experienced journalist always on the lookout for development stories. He is involved with the Urban Journalism Academy a pioneering and innovative initiative to train journalists and media professionals who are already interested or involved in urban development with reference to social and economic issues facing cities in the 21st Century.



Janine Bakker and Monique Nolte believe that documentaries can have real impact when the audience not only watches, but also likes, shares and participates. That’s why they created THE CASE – an innovative multi-channel documentary platform where filmmakers share stories through all possible channels. Their goal is to connect the community to every individual, investor, politician, organisation or company that wants to make a change on a specific topic. The start of their idea was Monique’s documentary Het Beste voor Kees, which tells the story of 44-year old autistic Kees and his parents. The documentary caused quite a stir on social media, resulting in a Facebook page with over 46.500 followers, where you can read the still ongoing exchange of letters between Kees and documentary maker. How can documentaries be crucial instruments in educational plans and in structural behaviour as policy and legislation?

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