Who we are

The Open Book for Sustainist Design project was initiated by Michiel Schwarz and The Beach.

Michiel Schwarz is the co-creator (with Joost Elffers) of the book “Sustainism Is the New Modernism: A Cultural Manifesto for the Sustainist Era” that was published in New York in 2011. He is a cultural sociologist with international consultancy experience in the fields of creative innovation, cultural and societal change, design processes, globalisation, digital media, and cultural policy. He combines his involvement in social design processes with his academic insights regarding the design of the future.

The Beach is a network organisation, co-founded by Michiel Schwarz and Diana Krabbendam, that designs and implements cultural projects to encourage processes of societal transformation. Collective creativity, cross-overs between disciplines, and collaboration between professionals and amateurs (pro-am) are viewed as necessary ingredients to make societal change happen. In the Open Book project, The Beach is responsible for overall project development from content to execution.

The project team consists of Michiel Schwarz (cultural sociologist), Diana Krabbendam (social designer and cultural entrepreneur), Bas Ruyssenaars (organisational anthropolologist and creative entrepreneur), Mira de Graaf (social designer), Steffie Verstappen (creative thinker and writer), Robin Uleman (graphic designer), and Mediamatic (web community design).

The Open Book for Sustainist Design project is funded by DOEN Foundation and the Mondriaan Fund. The ideas and examples contributed to this web platform will feed into a design guide that will be published by BIS Publishers later this year