Hogeschool van Amsterdam

Cities Including Children

Mission and Vision

Inclusion is a Journey, not a Destination (Keith Topping, 2012)

These years cities are rapidly growing and social environments change along with new populations – moving to cities from the countryside, from other countries, from poorer parts of the world or fleeing from the world’s war zones. Western countries are also facing neo-nationalism, patriotism and strong exclusion in politics as well as in everyday life. These developments ask for dynamic and creative environments for present and future population, environments that are open for change and ready to embrace and include newcomers in existing cultures. The cities must keep moving in order to avoid segregation – in urban planning, in social institutions, in culture.

Change the World – begin with the Education (De Winter, 2012)

This project aims at creating possibilities for young children and their families to grow up in environments that allow diversity to live and enhance social inclusion.

The concept of inclusion has many faces:

  • As a question of urban planning with a conscious aim for non-segregation;
  • As a position from where the relations between individual and community can be observed in a new way;
  • As an analytical concept, a critical mirror for non-reflected processes of exclusion in institutional contexts and educational practice.

The project also focuses on the work field: Early Child Care Education and Care (ECEC) and primary school and the (future) professionals who are met with expectations of creating space for diversity in a broad sense – and at the same time enhance cognitive and social skills. This often goes hand in hand with economic cut backs in the social area with insufficient resources to fulfill needs and expectations.

Our vision is to bring the different perspectives together - from city developers to educators to children and their families - in a creative and dynamic movement that can enhance social inclusion that continues after the project period.

Published by  Centre for Applied Research in Education 8 November 2018