The Vienna Open Festival 2014 takes place for the third time in succession. This year, the main focus lies on the open composition of design and architecture as well as on open knowledge transfer and urban development. The festival negotiates current projects and collaborations in the area of culture and creative industries and around the New Critical Theory.

During the festival period from October 16th to November 2nd, a variety of topics revolving around the omnipresent digitalisation, new ways of open societies and open economic models are investigated. Workshops and presentations will raise and discuss questions such as ‘What kind of post-digital strategies does an open society need? Do initiatives such as Upcycling, Repair it and Fab Labs create a new materialism? Or do the economy, politics and society need new models and social innovations so as to react to future problems better? Current approaches and questions of the critical theory relating to the investigation of society and technology, ecocide, alienation and societal inequalities are taken into consideration.



Vienna Open 2014 The Program

The post-digital age as a term describes the society that is pervaded by electronic and digital processes. Digital is omnipresent and has alternated the production of goods, our socio-economic living spaces and our communicative behaviour permanently. Under this light, how does society react when all aspects of living are displayed digitally?

In recent years, also influenced by the Vienna Open festival, a ‘Wiener Modell’ of Open Design has developed that not only examines open design processes and design per se, but also adjacent fields, such as the cultural and creative industries. The festival also investigates our interaction with daily products, processes and the way we exchange, distribute and negotiate our goods. Shared Economies, Open Source and Upcycling are new ways of critical exchange and consumption and constitute a new materialism which is a further issue of the festival. Open Design and Fab Labs generate a new kind of cooperation and collaboration.




In order to give the public an understanding of these issues and to set new standards within the community and the city, practical and applied examples are worked out and discussed throughout presentations and workshops.

Post-Digital Strategies in an Open Society

Digitalisation has become the everyday life of each of us. This year our interest lies on strategies and tactics that shall provide an answer to a fully digitalised life and surveillance. In particular, visitors will be shown projects, ideas and approaches that support a new self-determination of the consumer and producers in terms of an opening-up process. By means of digitalisation, our consumption and our behaviour can be decoded, processed and interpreted by machines. We intend to demonstrate the limits of digitalisation as well as the opportunities of a post-digital Hacktivism.


A New Materialism and Alternative Systems of Value Creation

In all societies, the relation of human beings is determined by the exchange of information, products and services. The way we exchange, negotiate and distribute these material and immaterial goods, is the representation of our societal order and reveals current problems. This approach embodies a new materialism in the interaction with our daily goods and products. The resource-efficient production and development of resilient products (FairMeter) and the transparent production of electronic goods such as FairPhone – but also the Hacktivism of „I fix it“ against the planned obsolescence of mobile phones and computers in the „illegal“ publishing of repair manuals – show global strategies and tactic instruction. In urban and local conurbations, Fair Labs, Future Factories or networks such as 3DHubs generate an attractive alternative to common production and value chains. These alternative systems of value creation close the gap between the production and the makers and consumers, or in other words, bring back a part of the supply chain to the regional level.


Visualisierung der Wählerbeteiligung 2013 von WorkshopteilnehmerInnen

Visualisierung der Wählerbeteiligung 2013 von WorkshopteilnehmerInnen


Cooperations and the Wiener Modell of Open Design

Addressing the topic of Open Design, open city planning and architecture, a series of presentations and workshops have been compiled in cooperation with the Technical University of Vienna/Mobile city Lab and Paradocks. The vivid scenes revolving around topics such as “Upcycling”, “Maker Movement”, “Open Cooperation”, “Shared Economies”, „Fab Labs“, … have been worked out within the programme development together with Maker Austria, MA48, Happylab and others.

Collaborating with international cooperation partners and ‘Good Practice’ examples, we assume that we will sustainably contribute to the further development of the ‘Wiener Modell’, which is considered unique in the European area, in order to put Open Design strategies into practice. The ‘Wiener Modell’ of Open Design is not only limited to Open Design processes and design per se, but also examines adjacent societal fields of the cultural and creative industries. Moreover, Vienna Open tempts to foster and support projects and collaborations, which stand for open and creative solutions, to make it accessible to the general public.