Citylab2050: an urban lab to promote sustainability in Antwerp

Realized in Belgium

Citylab2050: an urban lab to promote sustainability in Antwerp

Citylab2050 is researching the best way for us to tackle the complex issues of today and of the near future. Participatory multi-stakeholder processes are being used to set up experiments in the city that will contribute to a more sustainable Antwerp in 2050.

The challenge

We live in a world of increasing complexity, and the challenges that we now face are no exception. Sustainability is one such complex challenge. How can we make the city as livable as possible, for as many people as possible, without further undermining our environment? Or better still: while helping to improve our environment? How do we consume sustainably, how do we engage in economic activity without polluting, and above all, how do we do all this while also taking into account the expectations, freedoms and lifestyles of residents?

The approach

The traditional approaches cannot cope with this level of complexity. There are no easy solutions and we cannot achieve anything alone. If we want to make Antwerp into a sustainable city in 2050, we will need to take an integrated approach to tackling problems, working with all the relevant stakeholders. We need to get to know each other and find the best ways of working together. This is at the heart of what Citylab2050 does: discovering how we can tackle sustainability challenges together. We must all take the plunge – together. By experimenting, producing concrete solutions, working together and continuing to learn.

Since 2017, Rebel has been acting as one of the supervisors for the Citylab2050 participation programs. Together with our partners The Change Designers and Drift, we have been developing an innovative approach that focuses specifically on the balance between long-term transitions on the one hand and concrete short-term opportunities on the other. Our role focuses primarily on project management, support for co-creation, innovative business models and expanding the Citylab2050 network.


Our innovative approach is involving and engaging citizens and the business community in the challenges we face in Antwerp.