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Making Places & Shaping Destinations (1st semester 22/23)

What is your favourite place? Feeling attracted to a place or not depends on whether you feel a sense of connection. In this minor, you discover why we find places liveable or visitable and you learn how to design attractive and flourishing places. 


What is it all about? 

Within this minor you will analyse and create future proved places incorporating new technology by simultaneously ensuring equality, accessibility, and stakeholder engagement. Placemaking is a set of tools and processes to bring a community right in the centre of transforming where they live. Drawing on social, economic, cultural, political, and environmental domains, placemaking helps to improve and shape a location - either through physical or digital interventions. This may range from communal gardens, art murals, community libraries or pop-up events with the aim to improve a neighbourhood, city, or region. Placemaking inspires people to collectively reimagine a public place as the heart of the community to live, work and play in. Within this minor the multidisciplinary team inspires you to become an impactful placemaker of tomorrow acknowledging the human touch.  


Working within an international context 

Within this minor you have the opportunity to work with national and international industry partners and communities. We invite guest lectures from Ryerson University Canada, Amsterdam and Partners, the Faroe Islands, Slovenia, or the European Commission. Destination Shaping require carefully designed and governed collaborative processes. This involves local residents, communities, and different stakeholders to elicit the locally available strengths and promote well-being and liveability of visitors and residents. A dedicated team of interdisciplinary coaches and experts will guide you through this minor. The course draws on latest theory and practical experience by means of lectures, international case studies ranging from marina planning to community development in India and field trips within Europe. 


Future perspective 

Depending on your personal background and development, you will have the opportunity to work as a community builder, spatial experience manager, design thinker, innovator, or urban planner in municipalities, public bodies or consultancies or landscape architects and planners.  


  • Gaining a basic understanding of the concepts of Placemaking and Shaping Destinations 
  • Being able to apply methods, concepts, and principles to analyses public space as an Urban Designer  
  • Understanding and applying the theoretical concepts and models of Placemaking, marketing and branding 
  • Formulating informed responses to socio-economic challenges by understanding policy making, governance, as well as adopting new policies, technologies, and new institutional forms to manage growth and change 
  • Reflecting on the relationship between destination governance and sustainability 
  • Providing basic advice to destination-based stakeholders on how to optimize the customer experience in relation to the available tourism product offer 


Open for students from Tourism Management, Urban Design, Leisure and Event Management, Architecture, Social Sciences, Anthropology  

Propaedeutic certificate obtained


Study material and readings will be provided in class. We do not work with a specific book but require students to make use of the library, databases and online material. A field trip to an international destination might be possible (depending on travel restrictions). An alternative case study in the Netherlands will always be provided. 


A variation of group and individual assessments are applied in the modules including oral examinations (advisory talk, panel presentations), consultancy/advisory reports and assignment portfolios.  


We often work with external commissioners and include their expertise in the assessment. You will be coached and advised by BUAS lecturers and external professionals of the field.  

Aanvullende informatie


This minor provides you with a range of the following competencies:  

  • Critical and analytical thinking 
  • Understanding, analysing, and impacting complex systems 
  • Stakeholder engagement 
  • Creativity  
  • Structured working attitude and rigour  
  • Multidisciplinary approach of placemaking drawing on urban planning, design, tourism, and sustainable impact theory 
  • Intercultural perspectives and viewpoints 



The overall goal of this minor is that students will acquire the relevant understanding in dealing with and responding to socio-economic and environmental challenges in placemaking and shaping destinations. This encompasses: 

  • Design thinking 
  • Narrative Design, place branding and storytelling  
  • Comparative Case Studies 
  • Mapping functional and social use of public space 
  • Scenario planning 
  • Stakeholder analysis, stakeholder and community engagement 
  • Interventions, prototype development and testing 
  • Policy making 
  • Destination governance and sustainability 


Structure of the minor 

The minor exists of three modules and the final fieldwork assignment.  

Module 1 Understanding Placemaking (7 ECTS) = 5 weeks 

  • Definition of placemaking 
  • Placemaking processes mapping 

Module 2 Creating Placemaking (7ECTS) = 4 weeks 

  • Scenarios & placemaking 
  • Community engagement 
  • Sustainability in placemaking 

Module 3 Realising Placemaking (6 ECTS) = 3 weeks 

  • Implementing interventions 
  • Awareness of economical, social and ecological impact 
  • Contextual differences and success of interventions  

Fieldwork (EU country or NL - tbd) (10 ECTS) = 5 weeks 

  • Applying the learnings from module 1-3 in an (inter)national context 

A detailed planning is provided in the student manual of the course.  


Teaching method(s): 

The teaching methods vary per module and teacher. We offer a variety of 

  • Workshops 
  • (guest) lectures from industry and academia 
  • flipped classroom 
  • self-guided learning.   


International context 

We work in an international environment and in groups with students from various backgrounds. Part of the lecturing staff is non-Dutch and has extensive international experience in the tourism, urban design, the leisure industry and placemaking context. The topics and cases covered are largely presented from an international perspective. 



There might be costs for the field trip involved (travel costs)