City under Microscope Amsterdam



Aart Oxenaar, Director, Monuments and Archeology, Department, City of Amsterdam

Aart studied art history and archeology at Amsterdam University and obtained his PhD in 2009. He worked for the Netherlands Architecture Institute in Rotterdam, was the Founding Coordinator of the Centre for Architecture and Urbanism in Tilburg and was the Director of the Amsterdam Academy of Architecture until 2014. Since 2015, he is the Director of the Amsterdam Monuments and Archeology Department.

Yoeri Albrecht, Director, Centre De Balie

Yoeri has a Master’s degree and PhD in international law from Leiden University and studied European politics at Oxford. He is the Director of De Balie, a centre for free speech, contemporary art, politics and cultural events in Amsterdam. He is also the Director of a media ompany,
founder of the European Press Prize and he regularly works as a journalist, critic and media consultant on TV and radio.

Mirik Milan, Official Night Mayor of Amsterdam

Mirik is the Night Mayor of Amsterdam, and longtime creative director of some of the Dutch capital’s most celebrated events. Since 2012, he has played an instrumental role in the reshaping of Amsterdam’s nightlife scene into one of the most vibrant and economically robust in the world. His innovative position is fast becoming replicated in major nightlife-focused cities around the world, like New York, Paris and London.


Pieter Klomp, Deputy Director, Urban Planning and Sustainability Department, City of Amsterdam

Pieter trained as a landscape architect at Wageningen University and holds a MBA from the TiasNimbas Business School. He is the Deputy Director of the Amsterdam Urban Planning and Sustainability Department, leading amongst others the “Koers 2025” programme which aims at directing the strong growth of Amsterdam towards a human-scale metropolis. Pieter has also been actively involved in the transformation of the Northern IJ banks as supervisor of NDSM (the former shipyard) and Buiksloterham (a living lab for circular, smart and bio-based development).

Paco Bunnik, Chief Urban Designer, City of Amsterdam

Paco is a multidisciplinary designer, from urban design to architecture and lighting design. He graduated in architecture at Delft University of Technology. After a decade working in his own firm, he joined the Amsterdam Department of Planning and Sustainability in 2008. He is currently working on the urban development of the Central Business District Zuidas, the IJ-waterfront project and the new Amsterdam lighting policy. Paco is an active member of LUCI and contributed to the LUCI Light & Art Commission and publication.

Hans Akkerman, Head of Illumination, City of Amsterdam

Hans has been working as senior advisor for public lighting and illumination at Amsterdam Traffic and Public Space Department since 2000. He studied political science at Leiden University and heritage studies at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. As one of the delegates representing the City of Amsterdam within LUCI, Hans contributed to the LUCI Light & Art Commission and publication.


Frans van der Avert, CEO, Amsterdam Marketing

Frans completed his studies in museology in 1984, before going on to specialise in cultural marketing. From 1991 to 2002, he was PR Manager for the Rijksmuseum. In 2002, he was named Head of Communications, Education and Marketing for two other famous museums in Amsterdam – De Nieuwe Kerk and the Hermitage. Until 2013, he was Chief Marketing Officer of the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area and is
now Director of Amsterdam Marketing.

Daniël van Motman, Project Manager Crowd Management, City of Amsterdam

Daniël is an expert adviser on traffic management working for the Amsterdam Traffic Management Department. He works as Director of Traffic for the District of Zuidoost (South-East Amsterdam) and as Project Manager Crowd Management for the City of Amsterdam.

Simon Sprietsma, Architect and Urban Designer, City of Amsterdam

Simon has been developing public spaces since 1992. He has worked on several major projects for the City of Amsterdam. In 2002, he was awarded the Wibautprijs by the then Mayor of Amsterdam. In addition to his work with the City of Amsterdam, he runs his own agency Simon Sprietsma Stadslandschappen (Simon Sprietsma City Landscapes) which also works with other Dutch councils and developers.

Willem ter Kuile, Designer of luminaires and optics, Arsis

Willem graduated from Delft University of Technology as an industrial design engineer. In 1990, he created his own company called Arsis which grew and became specialised in luminaires and optics. Arsis often works for the City of Amsterdam and has, for example, redesigned the city’s canal luminaires. The company also works on an international level with municipalities in Sweden and Canada.

Anneke Blokker, Urban Ecologist, City of Amsterdam

Anneke is an Urban Ecologist at the City of Amsterdam. Besides her research project on bats, she advises experts on how to build and design cities while respecting local fauna. She advocates that the coexistence between human beings and other species in urban environments is favourable to both, and that green spaces and biodiversity are essential factors for qualitative living conditions in cities.

Sladjana Mijatovic, Circular Innovation Officer, City of Amsterdam

Sladjana graduated as urban designer at Delft University of Technology. In 2013, she worked at the City of Amsterdam Department of Economics and Marketing, where she rolled out a development strategy to create a suitable investment environment for foreign companies settling in Amsterdam. She is the Circular Innovation Officer for the Amsterdam Chief Technology Office since 2014.

Stephan van Dijk, Programme Manager Research, AMS Institute

Stephan has been the lead Programme Manager Research at the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Solutions since 2014. The AMS Institute aims to become a leading research organisation where its founding universities (MIT, TUD and WUR), the City of Amsterdam, business partners, citizens and societal organisations co-research, co-design and co-experiment on crucial metropolitan challenges.

Ger Baron, Chief Technology Officer, City of Amsterdam

Ger started his professional career at Accenture, where he worked as an analyst in the consulting department. In 2007, he was hired by Amsterdam Innovation Motor in the role of project manager, specifically to enhance the role of ICT and develop the Amsterdam Smart City Initiative. He is now the Chief Technology Officer of the City of Amsterdam, responsible for innovation and R&D.

Presentation of the Amsterdam Light Festival

Frédérique ter Brugge, Managing Director, Amsterdam Light Festival

Frédérique has a Bachelor’s degree in hotel management, as well as a Master’s degree in art history. She began her career in the financial sector, set up the art company “Dutch Collection” in London in 2011, and on her return to the Netherlands, focused on art-related activities. Today, as the Managing Director of the Amsterdam Light Festival, she combines her entrepreneurial experience with her passion for light and art, and for Amsterdam.

Raymond Borsboom,Director Light Art Collection, Amsterdam Light Festival

Raymond founded O is 4, an event marketing agency, and acquired Artifex, a bureau specialised in event creation and cultural package deals. Between 2010 and 2016, he was the Executive Producer and Director of Amsterdam Light Festival. Then, together with the festival board, he founded Light Art Collection which aims to internationally re-exhibit the artworks originally created for Amsterdam Light Festival.

Light Spectrum

Sylvia Pont, Prof. Dr. Perceptual Intelligence Lab, Delft University of Technology

Sylvia graduated in experimental physics at Amsterdam University and obtained her PhD in 1997 at Utrecht University. She then studied computer assistance for visually disabled people and returned to Utrecht University to investigate ecological optics. In 2008, she started to coordinate the Perceptual Intelligence Lab at Delft University of Technology. Her research group studies design, perception and optics of light and materials.

Siegrid Siderius, Lighting Designer, Chairman of Lichtontwerp Nederland

Siegrid has over 20 years of experience in lighting design. She is Lighting Designer and Chairman of Lichtontwerp Nederland. Her aim is to create a balance between light and dark, between daylight and artificial light. For her, light is space, and architecture plays a central role in her work. With lighting design, she seeks to make the invisible visible.

Break out sessions


Henk van der Geest, Director, Institute of Lighting Design

Henk has been working as a lighting designer for the theatre since 1982. In 1988, he also developed his portfolio working on architecture, exhibitions (in major Dutch museums) and public space. Some years ago, he initiated the Dutch Institute of Lighting Design in Amsterdam fostering the artistic development of emerging professional lighting designers and organising workshops or expert meetings for the lighting community.

Iris Dijkstra, Lighting Designer, Atelier LEK

Iris obtained her Master’s degree in industrial design engineering at Delft University of Technology and has specialised in lighting design since then. In 2004, she founded Atelier LEK (meaning light and colour) in Rotterdam, a broadly-oriented, independent lighting design company that works on the quality of the lighting experience in public spaces and exterior and interior of buildings.

Titia Ex, Artist

Titia is an artist who works with light, movement and spatial perception. She focuses on the link that light art has with its surroundings. The history of a site and the current use of the space play a significant part in the interpretation of her work. Her installations are shown and recognized around the world.

Giny Vos, Artist

Giny is a visual artist. She has been creating large-scale projects in the public domain for over 25 years. Using light as the essential element, she seeks to animate the environment while considering the urban surroundings and adding an aspect that transcends the space.

Matthijs ten Berge, Founder of Happy Tunnel, Jasper Klinkhamer, Architect & Bastiaan Schoof, Lighting Designer

Matthijs ten Berge, Jasper Klinkhamer and Bastiaan Schoof are responsible for tunnel projects in which the creative use of light and media play an essential role. Amongst others, they developed several creative tunnel projects in Amsterdam, like “Hang in there” (special mention LUCI city.people.light award 2015) and “Moodwall” (Dutch Design Award 2009).

Robert Jan Vos, Independent Lighting Designer

Robert has been a lighting designer and consultant for 28 years. As a professional member of IALD, he realised several indoor and outdoor projects in collaboration with renowned architects, artists and designers. Since 2009, he owns his lighting design office, Robert Jan Vos
Lichtontwerp en -advies. He is also very active in several interest groups, i.e. Lichtontwerp Nederland.

Ellen de Vries, Independent Lighting Designer

Ellen became fascinated by the phenomenon of light at a young age. In her early career, she was a lighting designer for theatre and video productions, before going on to work for Philips Lighting. In 2004, she started the Lux Lab, creating lighting master plans for cities, including Amsterdam. Alongside this, she developed concepts for short-term projects, including schemes for light art festivals such as GLOW in Eindhoven.


Femke Haccou, Chief Innovation Officer, City of Amsterdam

Femke studied spatial planning and landscape architecture. She started her career at the Alterra Research Institute of Wageningen University, but found her passion in working for the City of Amsterdam. Her fascination for cities, design, social media and people, moved her expertise towards design thinking processes. Since January 2015, she has been working as the Chief Innovation Officer at the Amsterdam Chief Technology Office, focusing on social digital innovation, sharing economy and interactive democracy.

Melanie August de Meijer, Urban Innovation Designer, City of Amsterdam

Melanie grew up in New York, where she kickstarted her career. She studied graphic design, allround design and urban design, while working as a freelancer in graphic interaction and urban design. She began working for the Amsterdam Planning and Sustainability Department in 2014. Since April 2017, she is Urban Innovation Designer at Amsterdam Chief Technology Office.

Stefan Bakker, Account Manager, Port of Amsterdam

Stefan is Account Manager for the Port of Amsterdam. He is responsible for real estate and infrastructural projects. One of these projects is the sustainable bicycle track “Re-Light”, a smart combination of direct current, lighting and local energy. The Port of Amsterdam is increasingly evolving as a major partner in innovation within the Amsterdam region.

Sander van Stiphout, Director, Amsterdam ArenA International

Sander holds degrees from Delft University of Technology, Hawaii University and Amsterdam University. He is specialised in managerial advice for planning, development, design, construction, exploitation and security of arenas and large venues. Since 2006, he is responsible for Amsterdam ArenA International. Since 2016, he is also Programme Manager of Amsterdam Innovation ArenA, which implements new innovations for the city’s stadium together with strategic partners.

Kees Klein Hesselink, Director Arena Solutions, Philips Lighting

Kees has been holding different management positions at Philips Lighting for more than 26 years in the Netherlands and abroad (USA, Dubai and Brazil). Since 2013, he has been leading the Arena Solutions group of Philips Lighting, aiming to create the best experience for customers and partners with integrated connected lighting and the latest sustainable innovative solutions and services.

Anne Weeda, Head of Assets, City of Rotterdam

Anne obtained her Master’s degree in urban planning and urban regeneration at Delft University of Technology. Since 2010, she works for the City of Rotterdam Department for Maintenance and Management of Public Space, and more specifically in the Assets Management Team
for green infrastructures, roads, lighting and playgrounds. Her missions include a focus on a risk and opportunity based strategy to maintain the public space.

Jean-Paul Rocour, Head of Assets, City of Amsterdam

Jean-Paul was Project Director at Rijkswaterstaat for more than 20 years, prior to working for the Municipality of Amsterdam. Rijkswaterstaat is responsible for the design, construction, management and maintenance of the main infrastructure facilities in the
Netherlands, including the national main road and waterway networks. Since 2012, he is Head of Assets for Amsterdam Traffic and Public Space Department.

Lennart Booij, Moderator

Lennart is a moderator, exhibition creator, strategy adviser and cultural entrepreneur who works for the Amsterdam Light Festival. He graduated as an art historian specialised in the work of the French glass artist Lalique in 2013. He also co-founded The Campaign Office – BKB and previously presented several famous Dutch TV programmes.