We are Michiel Goossensen, Liselotte Hoogewerf, Wu Zhihao, Quin Lee Ali Hoessein and Joost Kuckartz, and since January we’ve accepted the challenge to put our mark on a more beautiful world. During the brainstorms on how our idea would be shaped, we knew one thing for certain: the new Environmental Act had to be the focal point. A platform quickly emerged, but also wild ideas such as cryptocurrencies and micro-credits. At the end of the line a plan had to be realistic, and slowly settling down we had to leave behind these wild ideas.

We arrived at the CrowdCreation tool, in which citizen participation is key. Research has indicated that billions could be saved when residents and other stakeholders were involved at an early stage. By informing them, letting them cocreate and participate, we create support. To test this, we asked residents of The Hague, Rotterdam and Delft how they view projects in their neighborhood. The result: they’re uninformed all the while they like to participate!

CrowdCreation will provide project developers the platform to present their project in an understandable and visual manner. The sustainability impact can be shown and stakeholders can participate in the development. CrowdCreation does not only link resident and developers, but also other stakeholders can gauge the involvement of citizens, such as municipalities. Although many parties think participation is a costly business, in the end it’s cost effective due to project support and fewer project delays.

Our way of working makes you think we’re a startup. The process of the Doe & Durf (Do & Dare) Challenge also supported this. Our enthusiasm was raised by sessions, sharing ideas with other teams, and the different submissions. We had to make a ‘funny’ submission to participate, everybody shared their own ideas freely, and we continued working just like a startup would until after midnight to get things done.

In this spirit and using our enthusiasm we managed to reach the finals, of which we are very proud of course. We have to pitch our idea for 5 minutes, and make a one minute video that explains our idea. We can do this! Just like all other teams we’re going for gold. But, even in the rare case we’re not winning, the cliché is true: participating is more important than winning. We know our idea is applicable. Besides support within Arcadis and interest to link our initiative to existing projects, we’re receiving positive feedback and interest from experts, municipalities and project developers. All in all, we think we’re already successful!