Club of Amsterdam
Special Summer Event / Open Round Table
A Club of Amsterdam event in collaboration with MySTèR.
This Open Round Table is part of the Art Exhibition with Native American Artists
Turtle Island Meets Europa
A Fairy Tale
Once upon a time we were tribal. Like trees, we did not need to define ourselves. A tree does not have to ask: what do I have to be like to be a tree. They came with the armies, religion, power structures of all kinds to dominate us and change us into their image of what they imagined themselves to be and forced our parents and grandparents to abandon their pagan tribal ways. Many of us know those stories but many still don’t. Many of us did not want to follow what we were told we must believe for many reasons and searched for something more satisfying. Some were still able to grow up in better ways, even tribal ways. There are many different stories that could be told. We rejected the confusion of the world around us and searched for alternatives and found there are many. Some of us are still searching. Either way, it has its own confusion. The search for what it means to be tribal is important but confusing at times but also exciting and challenging and will include conflict and threaten survival, as in many parts of the world today where it is dangerous when people choose to be different, a deadly hope. But it ispreferable to live with this confusion and conflict rather than subscribe to the confusing world of domination all around us, everywhere, where ‘nobody cares if the people live or die’, as Leonard Cohen sings in “In My Secret Life.” The confusion and conflict are not bad as long as we strive for harmony and better ways,not just for ourselves but also for our children’s children and future generations. What do wehope the world will be. An Australian Elder told me when we were talking about colonization that it took them 40,000 years to get to where they now are, and they are willing to allow the same time to the newcomers. He and others who said the same thing meant it. We can support each other. We can listen to our stories and tell them. We can act. Too many are not that fortunate. We can be thankful. Once upon a time we were people of the Earth. Many survived the holocausts. Many didn’t. She has many tribes to take care of like the tree tribe, the animal tribes. We can choose to help her. She is doing her best. We can become People of the Earth, too. They will survive. The tribal people will survive. Bernie Harder
Luc Sala: “In our day and age the old tribal awareness, once rooted in genetic and ethnic connections, is changing, people feel a tribal connection based on common cultural patters, shared expressions like music, literature, sports or just common interests. The internet and its social networking opportunities enhances this trend. So there are tribes of people interested and active in this or that hobby, activity or subject.
A special kind of tribal awareness, and one that has deep roots in many indigenous cultures, is the shared feeling that a tribe shares a magical understanding, a sacred and to some extent secret core. We can call these the tribes of magic.
This magical feeling goes beyond the religious, it has to do with the spiritual connectedness to the all, with nature, the earth, with the notion that we are all one.”
Seth Godin, American entrepreneur, author: “A tribe is a group of people connected to one another, connected to a leader, and connected to an idea…A group needs only two things to be a tribe: a shared interest and a way to communicate.”
From the preface to Seth Godin’s book “Tribes“: “The Latin word tribuere (of which the word “tribe” is derived) means to divide, share, assign, allocate (and the Latin “tribe” is the arrangement of people into groups). In short, each of us, to paraphrase Michel Serres, is the fuzzy intersection of tribes. This, by itself, is not new; what is new, though, is that each of us is now able to easily express this multiplicity via the Internet — to choose to belong to several tribes either as leaders or as followers.”
15:00 – 17:00
Open Round Table with
Ola Parcinska, Culture Specialist
Luc Sala, MySTèR
Robert Shepherd, Founder, Eduverse
Khannea Suntzu, Second Life Extravaganza
Aja Waalwijk, Artist, Ruigoord
and more …
Our moderator is
Arjen Kamphuis, Futurist, Co-founder, CTO, Gendo
Passionate about people and different cultures Aleks enjoys an international life style. Originally from Poland, she lived in France, Austria, and England before moving to the Netherlands and the multilingual city of Amsterdam. After a few years of working as a management consultant, Aleks moved into the cultural sector. Aleks worked with the Dutch Polish Foundation in Amsterdam and recently completed a job as a project manager for the research project on multilingualism in Europe, “Language Rich Europe” in the British Council Netherlands.
Luc Sala is a physicist and economist by training, but worked all his life in the media as entrepreneur, television maker, writer, journalist and publisher. He has written thousands of articles and a dozen books about many subjects, from ICT to the esoteric. His fancy is understanding information and how humans use information.
Robert Shepherd is a graduate from the University of Toronto and the Ontario College of Art. He has been working with electronic media since 1978. His goal is to create more intuitive integration between abstract/synthetic worlds and the real world. In Feb 2008 he established The Eduverse Foundation to further his goals of promoting virtual environments for educational purposes. The Eduverse has had 3 symposia, initiated the “emocracy” project and the MEP (which looks to use SimCity as a mobile phone based educational platform), presented at the ibc, AR+RFID (The Hague), IDIAP and the Waag Society, acted as virtual educational consultant to surfnet and kennisnet, been involved with TEDxAmsterdam, The AMI consortium, FITC Amsterdam, Picnic, FiFi, Cinekid, Appsterdam , ESUG and the Club of Amsterdam. Robert has also taught virtual world strategies to educators from various universities in The Netherlands as well as setting up the University of Maastricht virtual design sim. His client list includes The ING Bank, IBM, NASA and Microsoft. At present he is working on developing an educational game event for Amsterdam and a project (together with STIMED) entitled The Visual Sound System (VSS) to help teach children to read and play music more intuitively.
Second Life Extravaganza
Khannea Suntzu is a blogger, ‘charting’ societal current trends with prevailingly sarcastic articles and comments. Interested in the full range of narratives ranging from Dystopian to Utopian, Khannea tends to ask those politically incorrect “taboo blind” questions that come back to haunt her. As a “card-carrying” critical transhumanist as well as LGBT rights activist, Khannea prefers the pronoun “she”, as the alternative would be just too boring. Khannea is a radical feminist and prefers women to be in charge for a century.
Khani narrates developments in energy/resource depletion, the collapse of global democratic values, human rights, emerging technologies, gaming (game design) and what we collectively expect the future to become. She recently held a short keynote in Belgrade on the dangers of irreversible technological unemployment (and the resulting massive societal disparity), a favoured subject which she has characterized as “a potential existential risk”.
Khannea is highly involved with ‘Second Life’, as she changed her real world name to reflect her registered Second Life Avatar. She regards SL as a “visualization tool”.
Khannea is a Space Based Power advocate, a radical progress advance, and is very concerned about the surreal degree of over-extendedness in the industrialized countries of the world. She is a rather bitter critic of US foreign policy and our current forms of capitalism.
In ‘spiritual’ matters, Khannea is inclined to dealing with the world with a Techno-Shamanic mindset, largely because that’s a good excuse to be lazy about complex technological minutiae.
Aja is born in 1952, working as a visual artist, teacher of Dutch language, performer and writer of songtexts. Involved in the village of Ruigoord, Zaal 100 (Amsterdam) and the Culturele Stelling van Amsterdam ( a growing network of cooperating free cultural spaces in and around the city of Amsterdam. Besides I am a member of the Amsterdam Balloon Company. At this moment participating in organising the Second Futurologic Symposium Free Cultural Spaces in Ruigoord coming august. I initiated e.g. the Urban Tribes Meeting in Christiania 2008, Danmark, and held a reading on the subject during the Boom-Festival in Portugal 2010.
Futurist, Co-founder, CTO, Gendo
Arjen is co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Gendo. He studied Science & Policy at Utrecht University and worked for IBM and Twynstra Gudde as IT-architect, trainer and IT-strategy advisor. Since late 2001 Arjen has been self-employed, advising clients on the strategic impact of new technological developments. He is a certified EDP auditor and information security specialist. As a much sought-after international speaker on technology policy issues he gives over 100 keynote talks every year.
Since 2002 he has been involved in formulating public IT-policy in the area of open standards and opensource for the government and public sector. Arjen advises senior managers and administrators of companies and public institutions, members of parliament and the Dutch Cabinet about the opportunities offered by open standards and opensource software for the European knowledge economy and society as a whole.
Besides information technology Arjen also works on scenarioplanning and strategic assesments of emerging technologies sush as bio- and nanotechnology. With clients he investigates the social, economic and geo-political impact of science and technology.
Arjen’s collumns and article’s can be found on his Gendo blog.