x = independently organized TED event

This event occurred on
September 6, 2013
12:00am - 12:00am CEST
(UTC +2hrs)
Berlin, BE

As of 2008, more than half the world’s population lives in cities. By 2050, that figure is projected to climb to 70 percent. The world’s urban centers are faced with a global challenge, but the necessary solutions will start on a local level.

TEDxBerlin "City 2.0" is a response to that challenge. How will our living conditions change as urban populations swell? What about health care, energy, and transport? And what qualities must the City 2.0 have in order to be a livable place?

TEDxBerlin has assembled more than 20 visionaries dedicated to answering such questions. From the practical to the fantastical, from groundbreaking projects that are already underway to utopian dreams—the perspectives we will explore on September 6-7 will shed light on what’s in store for our cities, and how we urban citizens can become part of the discussion.

ICC Berlin
Berlin, BE
Event type:
Standard (What is this?)
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Tomas Saraceno

Argentina-born artist Tomás Saraceno is known for his fantastic sculptures and installations that merge art, architecture, and science. Saraceno's work draws on his training as an architect, exploring man-made materials, natural structures, and the potential for a space. His spectacular works are dreamy and experimental, compelling viewers to re-imagine the world and its possibilities. Saraceno was artist in residence at the International Space Studies Program of NASA in the summer of 2009. He has also completed a residency at the MIT Center for Art, Science & Technology (CAST) in 2012.

Carlo Ratti

An architect and engineer by training, Carlo Ratti practices in Italy and teaches at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he directs the Senseable City Lab. Carlo holds several patents and has co-authored over 200 publications. His work has been exhibited worldwide at venues such as the Venice Biennale, the Design Museum Barcelona and the Science Museum in London, amongst many others. In June 2007 the Italian Minister of Culture named Carlo as a member of the Italian Design Council - an advisory board to the Italian Government that includes 25 leaders of design in Italy. Carlo was recently a presenter at TED 2011 and is serving as a member of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council for Urban Management. He is also a program director at the Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design in Moscow and a curator of the 2012 BMW Guggenheim Pavilion in Berlin.

Alessandro Grassani

Alessandro Grassani has been covering international events and stories about social themes in more than 30 countries in the world. In 2004, with the funeral of Yasser Arafat, he started to cover the ongoing conflicts in Israel and Palestine. He was in the Gaza Strip before and during the clearing out of the Colonies and returned again after the Hamas election victory and the military operation by the Israelis called “Summer Rain.” He also works in Iran, where he recorded the effects of the Bam earthquake in 2003. He has returned numerous times after the election victory of the conservative president Ahmadinejad, where he investigated the situation of the Hebrew-Iranian Jews, as well as working on a photographic project about the complex Iranian society. In 2011 he began a new long-term global project called “Environmental Migrants: The Last Illusion,” documenting the lives of individuals that were forced to migrate because of climate change and with no alternative to the illusion of a better life in the city. His work has been exhibited in Italy, London, Madrid, Tokyo, New York, Los Angeles and in many photo festivals. He is represented by the LUZphoto agency.

Jens Martin Skibsted

Jens Martin Skibsted is a design philosopher and serial entrepreneur. For more than a decade, he has helped Fortune 1000 companies build products that redefine marketplaces through iconic products. He pioneered the designer bicycle when founding Biomega, and he’s a founding partner KiBiSi, the leading Scandinavian product design group. His bicycle designs live in the permanent collections at the MoMA, Le CNAP and SFMOMA amongst others. A Young Global Leader who spoke at DLD, Design Indaba, Davos and numerous other World Economic Forum meetings, he is an advisory board member of the INDEX Award, vice-chair of World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Design and Innovation, and board member of the Danish Design Council. He is a published author and an ad hoc expert commentator for Fast Company, Harvard Business Review, Washington Post and more.

Bastian Lange

Bastian Lange is an urban and economic geographer and specialised within the creative industries, questions of governance and regional development. He spearheads the research and strategic consultancy office Multiplicities-Berlin and has since been Guest Professor at the Humboldt University in Berlin between 2011 and 2012. He is particularly interested in socioeconomic transformation processes within the creative knowledge age, refining them into a useable form for the fields of politics, business and creative scenes.

David Owen

David Owen has been a staff writer for The New Yorker since 1991. Before joining The New Yorker, he was a contributing editor at The Atlantic and, prior to that, a senior writer at Harper’s Magazine. He is the author of more than a dozen books, including Green Metropolis, about the environmental value of urban density, and The Conundrum: How Scientific Innovation, Increased Efficiency, and Good Intentions Can Make Our Energy and Climate Problems Worse.

Kai-Uwe Bergmann

Kai-Uwe Bergmann is a Partner at BIG who brings his expertise to proposals around the globe, including work in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and the United States. Kai-Uwe heads up BIG’s business development, which currently has the office working in over 15 different countries. In addition to these duties, Kai-Uwe is also Head of Communications. Registered as an architect in the USA, UK and Denmark, Kai-Uwe is also a LEED AP certified architect who was Project Manager upon Central Asia’s first Carbon Neutral Master Plan - Zira Island in Baku, Azerbaijan. He also compliments his professional work through teaching assignments at IE University in Madrid and at the New School of Architecture in San Diego. Kai-Uwe also sits on numerous international juries and lectures on the works of BIG worldwide.

Kolja Kugler

Kolja Kugler is a native Berlin Artist. In the early nineties Kolja collaborated with The Mutoid Waste Company. They lived, worked and exhibited on the former cold war frontline, Potsdamer Platz, Berlin. One of the most recognized works of this time is “The Lost Tribe of Mig”- project, an immense installation in the city centre of a Mig 21 fighter plane flying out of a four story building. Following years of traveling in Europe with the underground art movement group Alien Pulse Agency, Kolja took off on his own independent travels around the world. Throughout these travels he exhibited his largest robotic sculpture “Sir Elton Junk”, in various continents including Australia, Southeast Asia and the Americas. Being back in Europe since 2006, Kolja continues shaping sculptures.

Line Hadsbjerg

Line Hadsbjerg is a writer, a journalist and a storyteller. She was born in Denmark, but grew up in Kenya and South Africa. She believes in the power of storytelling and the importance of giving a voice to those who have been silenced by injustice in its many forms. Her current work continues to be centered around documenting human rights issues; promoting women’s empowerment through education and overcoming cultural barriers through story telling. Most recently she has produced an award winning multimedia and documentary film called “Into the Shadows”, which documents the lives of refugees who cross the border to South Africa, and enter the underworld of the inner city of Johannesburg.

Marc Elsberg

Marc Elsberg was born in Vienna, Austria, in 1967. For many years he worked as a creative in advertising, living in Hamburg from 1995 to 2003. His novel Blackout – Morgen ist es zu spät (Blackout – Tomorrow It Will Be Too Late), published in 2012, hit bestseller lists and made Elsberg a sought-after dialog partner for industry and politics. His thriller illustrates modern society’s interdependencies and vulnerabilities, dramatizing the consequences of a week-long blackout caused by a hacker attack against European and US power grids.

Mitchell Joachim

Mitchell Joachim is a leader in ecological design, architecture and urbanism. He is the founding Co-President of Terreform ONE. Mitchell is an Associate Professor at NYU and EGS in Switzerland. Previously he was the Frank Gehry Chair at University of Toronto and faculty at Pratt, Columbia, Syracuse, Washington, and Parsons. He was formerly an architect at Gehry Partners, and Pei Cobb Freed. He is a 2011 TED Senior Fellow and has been awarded fellowships with Moshe Safdie and Martin Society for Sustainability, MIT. He won the Zumtobel Group Award for Sustainability and Humanity, History Channel and Infiniti Award for City of the Future, and Time Magazine Best Invention of 2007 with MIT Smart Cities Car.

Yue Zhang

Zhang Yue, Chairman and President of BROAD Group, was born in Changsha in 1960 and graduated in 1980 with a college degree in fine arts, working as a teacher and librarian. He founded BROAD with 3,000 USD in 1988. Ever since its inception, he has had an innate passion for creative thinking into technology.

Yue Zhang

Zhang Yue, Chairman and President of BROAD Group, was born in Changsha in 1960 and graduated in 1980 with a college degree in fine arts, working as a teacher and librarian. He founded BROAD with 3,000 USD in 1988. Ever since its inception, he has had an innate passion for creative thinking into technology.

James Patten

James Patten, director of the design firm Patten Studio, is an interaction designer, inventor, and visual artist working at the intersection of the physical and digital worlds. James is a TED fellow and has exhibited or performed in venues such as the Museum of Modern Art, the Transmediale festival in Berlin, and the Ars Electronica Center in Linz, Austria. James’ work has been recognized in several international design competitions including the International Design Magazine's Annual Design Review and the Industrial Design Excellence Awards.

Priya Prakash

Priya Prakash is the Founder of Design for Social Change, a social impact business marrying realtime citizen data with grassroots action to affect change in neighbourhoods through Changify, its mobile crowdfunding platform. Changify brings together brands, neighbours and councils in a win/win way informing brand reputation, customer loyalty and boosting local economies in communities.

Fabian Hemmert

Fabian Hemmert is a design researcher, born and raised in Germany. During his studies towards an M.A. degree in Interface Design, he worked for Nintendo Europe and Marvel Comics. He is currently finishing his PhD at the the Design Research Lab at the Berlin University of the Arts. His thesis focuses on new ways of interacting with technology. Fabian is considered one of the leading experts for new ways of mobile telecommunication, having presented his work at multiple visionary events, including TED Global, CeBIT, TEDxBerlin, TEDxSalzburg, Lift Conference, the EuroVision TV Summit and the Chaos Communication Congress.

Kristien Ring

Kristien Ring Is the founder of AA PROJECTS Active Architecture_Cultural Projects (2011), engaged in the production of space in contemporary society. The studio conceives and realizes interdisciplinary projects on future oriented themes in the realm of architecture and urban planning for private as well as public institutions and initiatives. Kristien Ring is currently commissioned by the German Federal Foundation for Baukultur (Building Culture) for the development of their program. She is the author and editor of the publication SELF MADE CITY. Berlin, Self-initiated Urban Living and Architectural Interventions, published in 2013 by JovisVerlag and in cooperation with the State Department for Urban Development in Berlin.

Michael Schindhelm

Michael Schindhelm is a writer, filmmaker, performing arts expert and a cultural advisor for numerous international organizations. He has also worked as screenwriter (librettist), a TV presenter (Der Salon, Swiss TV) and as a translator. Schindhelm is the author of internationally produced documentaries including “Chants of the Steppes” (2004, arte, Frankfurt, Zurich, Paris), documenting the music of nomads in the Gobi desert (Mongolia) and „Bird’s Nest” (2008, arte/Swiss TV, Berne, Paris), which portrayed the construction of Beijing’s Olympic Games Stadium (designed by the Swiss architectural office Herzog&deMeuron).


Ofri Brin aka OFRIN, Born and raised in a scenic and secluded community, discovered her voice at the age of 14. After taking part in several musical projects in Israel and the UK, Ofri moved to Berlin in 2005, where she teamed up with pianist Oded K.dar. They established OFRIN, sharing their musical vision over a period of five years.

Sebastian Schlüter

Sebastian Schlüter is a geographer and urban researcher. His work focuses on the future of public spaces and the opportunities of increasing diversity in cities. Having formerly worked in west-african countries, Sebastian is now employed at the Humboldt-University of Berlin and is currently writing his PhD on the role of religions in urban development. He is the co-founder and CEO of Stadtaspekte – Die dritte Seite der Stadt, a new magazine on contemporary urban phenomena.

Reggie Watts

Reggie Watts, internationally renowned vocalist/ beatboxer/ musician/ comedian/ improvisor, amazes audiences with his unpredictable performances, which are created on-the-spot using only his formidable voice and looping pedals. Blending and blurring the lines between comedy and music with his unique lyrical style, LA Weekly calls Reggie ”the most wildly inventive new talent of the past five years.”

Mark Turrell

Mark Turrell is a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader (2010) and Technology Pioneer (2008). He pioneered the development of crowdsourcing and collective intelligence as founder of Imaginatik plc, focused on innovation and collaborative problem solving. During this time he consulted to hundreds of companies and business units, spanning a wide range of industries including healthcare, technology, chemicals, industrial, telecommunications and government.

Allison Dring

Allison Dring is an architect and co-founder of elegant embellishments, formed in 2008 as an architectural start-up, with the strategy of self-initiating projects for condition-specific spaces. Along with Daniel Schwaag, she initiated and produced proSolve370e, a decorative, three dimensional module that reduces air pollution in cities.

Ariane Conrad

Ariane Conrad is an editorial consultant and ghostwriter known as The Book Doula. She partners with thoughtleaders and superheroes across the globe to produce non-fiction books for mainstream audiences about world-changing ideas and solutions. In 2009, Ariane discovered the sharing economy, first as a viable solution for waste reduction and conservation of natural resources; and later, during research for Rebuild the Dream, as an engine for alternative employment and economic opportunities. In 2013 she became an advisor to OuiShare, the European-based global network for the collaborative economy. She has also served as a Community Board Member for the Story of Stuff Project since 2010.

Mazda Adli

Mazda Adli was born in 1969 into an Iranian diplomatic family in Germany and grew up in Cologne, Bonn and Teheran. He attended Medical Schools in Bonn, Vienna and Paris. After completing his doctoral thesis at the Departmtent of Neurology at the University of Vienna, he started his residency at the Department of Psychiatry at the Freie Universität Berlin. In 2004 he was appointed senior physician by the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. He became Director of the Mood Disorders Research Group in 2006 and received his venia legendi in 2010.

David Fernandez

David Fernández is a Spanish actor, dancer and a self-taught cellist, as well as a frustrated inventor. He integrates daily life technology into his works, in order to take back the power that individuals should have never lost. Acclaimed by Spain's press for his astonishing theatrical performances, 15 different productions with his own company also confirm him as a producer, writer and director. Since 2010 he has established himself in Berlin, focusing exclusively on musical composition and the cello as a world in itself.

David LeMaitre

Originally from La Paz, Bolivia, David Lemaitre grew up as the son of a painter and an engineer with the folk songs of the South-American highlands, including guitar lessons from virtuoso-cliché teachers and the '70s record collection of his father. In his early twenties he set out to see the world and ended up eventually in Berlin. He was supposed to become a scientist, but music was there to be discovered. He wrote his first songs and experimented with different styles and played shows with bands like Get Well Soon or Chris Garneau, followed by appearances at the Melt! Festival and EuroSonic, playing everywhere from clubs to bars to living rooms.

Organizing team


Berlin, Germany