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the future of Governance
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the future of Governance
participatory democracy

Wednesday, March 29, 2006
Registration: 16:00-16:30, Conference: 16:30-19:15
Where:, Sint Antoniesbreestraat 16, 1011 HB Amsterdam




The conference language is English.


  . Presentations  

Presentations by

Joop de Wit, Institute of Social Studies

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Oebele Bruinsma, Synmind bv
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Wybren Meijer & Pieter Pijlman, Futureconsult
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  . Content  

Joop de Wit, Institute of Social Studies
Managing the Indian Metropolis: New Forms of Governance in Mumbai and Delhi

Mumbai and New Delhi are amongst the fastest growing cities in the world, and this presents the city authorities with formidable challenges. This presentation explores some of the emerging trends in urban governance. One trend is urban decentralisation: Wards Committees have been established at the neighbourhood level, to which have been delegated powers and funds for local self governance. Another trend is increased attention for privatisation and for new forms of public service delivery including partnerships between cities and (organised) citizens, for example the powerful Resident Welfare Associations in New Delhi. The question is asked what the implications of these reforms are in terms of citizen voice and democracy, for both the (growing) middle classes and the massive numbers of urban poor.


Oebele Bruinsma, Synmind bv
Order from Chaos (inspired by Ilya Prigogine)

The aim of participatory democracy is individuals playing a more direct role in their own government, through lateral communications. Such communications are intended to shape (part of) their future.

This system of expression often creates a rather chaotic and unpredictable (in terms of best options) results.

By adding a system of setting and ranking priorities,and accepted by participants, will by its very nature bring order to chaos.


Wybren Meijer & Pieter Pijlman, Futureconsult:
Scenarios on Local Governance and Participatory Democracy - Method and Outcomes

What will the future look like for local democracy? Nobody is able to predict developments like the input of IT, referendums and direct democracy. Scenario planning though is an instrument capable of diminishing the risks accompanying the future. Wybren Meijer and Pieter Pijlman (Futureconsult) have been challenging institutions and governments and managements with future scenarios about these challenges. They will tell about the experiences in mapping the future of local governance in the knowledge economy. In addition they will show what scenario techniques and instruments they used and what the outcomes were.



  . Program

16:00 - 16:30

Welcome by our Moderator John Grüter,Systems Thinker, ICT Generalist, Technology Affectionado, Change Agent, Principal, Digital Knowledge

Part I:
Joop de Wit, Institute of Social Studies:
Managing the Indian Metropolis: New Forms of Governance in Mumbai and Delhi:

Oebele Bruinsma, Synmind bv:
Order from Chaos

Wybren Meijer & Pieter Pijlman, Futureconsult:
Scenarios on Local Governance and Participatory Democracy - Method and Outcomes

Coffee break with drinks and snacks.

Part II: Panel with the Speakers

and our Moderator
John Grüter

The panel is followed by an open discussion.

Closing remarks.

Joop de Wit

Oebele Bruinsma

Wybren Meijer

Pieter Pijlman

John Grüter


  . Speakers

Joop de Wit
Institute of Social Studies

Dr. Joop de Wit is an anthropologist teaching as Senior Lecturer Public Policy and Development Management at the Institute of Social Studies, The Netherlands. He also taught at the Institute of Housing Studies in Rotterdam, and worked with the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs as programme advisor urban poverty alleviation, and as Institutional Development Advisor. His regional interest is in Asia (India, Vietnam) but he also worked in Ethiopia, Namibia and South Africa. His key interests include (urban) governance, urban poverty alleviation, decentralization and community dynamics. He obtained his PhD at the Free University, Amsterdam ('Poverty, Policy and Politics in Madras Slums; Dynamics of Survival, Gender and Leadership' - Sage, 1996).



Oebele Bruinsma
Synmind bv

Oebele Bruinsma has a background in behavioural biology. He has worked both in public, including science, and private organisations. As an international consultant he is involved in industrial innovation and the driving processes of decision making underlying it.

He draws his inspiration both from nature and music which he considers both as ultimate expressions of knowledge management. He lives in the Netherlands.


Wybren Meijer & Pieter Pijlman

Wybren Meijer studied International Relations (BA/MSc) and Policy and Governance (BA/MSc) at the University of Amsterdam and the University of Sussex (UK). His graduation in IR was on the futuremapping of the Argentine junta on the eve of the Falklands War. His P&G master thesis was on the sustainability of democratic arrangements in war-torn countries. Since 2004 he joined the Futureconsult Scenarioplanning office in Amsterdam. At this position he developed scenariostudies and moderations for institutions, companies, political parties, schools and ministries.

Pieter Pijlman studied European Studies at the Faculty of Humanities (MA) of the University of Amsterdam. Pieter Pijlman was board member of the Amsterdam Student Union on behalf of the student associations and initiator of the biggest annual student event of Amsterdam, the UVA Cultural Festival. Pieter Pijlman has been working at the Futureconsult Scenarioplanning office since 2004. Next to his employment as junior advisor at Futureconsult Pieter currently teaches at the Academy of European Studies and Communication Management of The Hague University. Currently he coordinates a research project on the involvement of youth in politics in Europe.

Among the government-related clients of Pijlman and Meijer were the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, The Federation of University IT, OXFAM International Netherlands, The Hague University, Dutch Association of Institutional Researchers, Car Recycling Institute the Netherlands, Dutch Social Democrat Party (local and central divisions), ProRail, Higher Education for Economic Studies, The Dutch Province of Noord-Brabant, The Knowledge Economy Society, University of Utrecht, Foundation for collateral support Kriterion.


John Grüter

Systems Thinker, ICT Generalist, Technology Affectionado, Change Agent, Principal, Digital Knowledge

While studying psychology (language-orientation) at the Free University in Amsterdam, John worked part-time as a computer operator. Combining both activities in 1981 he joined a large social security orgisation in the Netherlands with a department created to introduce state of the art on-line database processing. In 1984 he joined the Dutch subsidiary of a US consultancy company as a systems architect, involved in the most research intensive projects building leading edge applications such as graphical user interfaces to large-scale administrative systems, integration of administrative and manufacturing systems, dedicated portable hardware/software to decentrally monitor critical components in chemical plants, and a logistical tracking and planning system using state of the art satellite communication and localisation. In 1990, with two colleagues he founded a consultancy, but left that after three years to join a large Dutch ICT Consultancy, where as a business architect he did many projects involving business process re-engineering, exploiting emerging information technology. In 2000 he joined an e-Business Architect that collapsed when the 'New Economy' bubble burst. In 2001 he started Digital Knowledge ( dedicated to developing and introducing new business concepts and approaches in medium scale organisations. Currently he is involved in several projects using web-based semantic technology, helping companies to leverage the value of their unstructured information. Recently John teamed up with VISH ( VISH and Digital Knowledge use Vish & Chipz ( to explore unconventional societal and business issues. John has entered the McKinsey new business management contest ( twice, once with a knowledge management product for students (memory bank for students) and recently, with Vish & Chipz, developing a product/service for emergency situations (escapePod). John was born in Australia and now lives in the Netherlands.



  . Tickets

Ticket prices include 19% VAT.

Event: the future of Governance
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
registration: 16:00-16:30, conference: 16:30-19:15
Location:, Sint Antoniesbreestraat 16, 1011 HB Amsterdam

How to pay for the tickets?
....Online: see below. We use paypal.

....By invoice: send an email with your billing details, number of tickets, type of tickets
....and event name to:
....At the door: registration: 16:00-16:30


Online Ticket Corner




Regular Ticket € 69,- [by invoice € 69,-, at the door € 79,-]


Student Tickets € 25,-
[by invoice € 25,-, at the door € 29,-]


Discount Ticket [*] € 59,- [by invoice € 59,-, at the door € 79,-]


[*] For tickets bought before the event day for Members of: the Club of Amsterdam, openBC, N.G.I., the Amsterdam American Business Club, Dutch Connection, Charles Ruffolo's Network-Club, KnowledgeBoard andSyntens.



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. Location
Sint Antoniesbreestraat 16
1011 HB Amsterdam

You can view a map at

Public Transport
Metro stop Nieuwmarkt. Turn left from metro exit into Sint Antoniesbreestraat.

By Car
Ring of Amsterdam (A10), direction Noord, exit S116 direction Noord/Centrum. After IJ-tunnel direction het Muziektheater, or direction Centraal Station.

Parking at het Muziektheater.



. Contact



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