architects bjarke ingels and shigeru ban, as well as artist olafur eliasson, are among the creatives to have been appointed to the high-level roundtable of the ‘new european bauhaus’ (NEB). as an initiative of the european union (EU), the program calls on all europeans to ‘imagine and build together a sustainable and inclusive future that is beautiful for our eyes, minds, and souls’. described as a ‘think-do tank’, the NEB seeks to serve as a platform for experimentation and connection, bridging the sphere of science and technology with the world of art and culture.

new european bauhaus bjarke ingels group’s waste-to-energy plant in copenhagen | main image courtesy of the new european bauhaus
images © hufton + crow | read more on designboom here



with a focus on co-creation, the NEB is an invitation to explore the positive potential of green and digital challenges. the initiative states that it has four objectives: to bring citizens, experts, businesses, and institutions together and facilitate conversations about making tomorrow’s living spaces more affordable and accessible; mobilize creative minds across disciplines to re-imagine sustainable living; improve the quality of our living experience through the values of simplicity, functionality, and circularity of materials; and provide financial support to innovative ideas and products through ad-hoc calls for proposals and coordinated programs.

new european bauhaus
shigeru ban and the voluntary architects’ network recently tested its partition system for vaccination sites
image courtesy of VAN – voluntary architects’ network | read more on designboom here



in short, the NEB wants to make the ‘green deal’ — a plan to make the EU’s economy sustainable — a cultural, human centered and positive, ‘tangible’ experience. the initiative is set to unfold in three phases: co-design, delivery, and dissemination. co-design, the first phase, involves gathering contemporary examples that showcase principles of the new european bauhaus. members of the high-level roundtable, including bjarke ingels, shigeru ban, and olafur eliasson, will act as ‘community ambassadors’ for the initiative. the outcome of the co-design phase will be a support framework based on EU programs, including a call for proposals for pilots in different EU member states where the new bauhaus concept will come to life.

olafur eliasson brings ice watch installation to london to inspire action against climate change
olafur eliasson brought his ice watch installation to london to inspire action against climate change
image © olafur eliasson | read more on designboom here



the delivery phase will begin in september 2021. this stage will start with the setup and implementation of NEB pilots, supported by specific calls for proposals. they will be closely followed and monitored in a ‘community of practice’ mode, to share the lessons learned from these first experiments. the focus of the dissemination phase will then be on diffusing good ideas, across europe and beyond. this will be about networking and knowledge sharing, to identify open, replicable methods, solutions and prototypes, and make them available to cities, localities, architects and designers. more information about the initiative, and instructions on how to get involved, can be found here.