30 June 2021

Utrecht Summer School

Utrecht Summer School UCU

Pop-up events for the city and beyond  

‘Creating tomorrow together’, is this year’s lustrum theme. In July and August, Utrecht Summer School is delivering, together with its partners, a number of pop-up events. These programmes all have in common that they take the participants from the past to the future. The events are open to all – students, staff, alumni, expats and others interested in the past, present and future of the city of Utrecht. Discover with us parts of the city that you have not seen before – and learn to look at it from a different angle.   

If ever there was a city with stories to tell, it’s Utrecht. Acquiring city rights in 1122, Utrecht evolved from a walled city in the Middle Ages into the open city which it is today. It has had its ups and downs, like any other city. In the 1960s one of Utrecht’s canals in the old town was concreted so that a 12-lane motorway could be built there. It soon came to be seen as a big mistake, resulting from a failure to take the city’s past into account. Recently, the canal has been restored though. The inner city is again surrounded by water and green space rather than asphalt and exhaust fumes.  

It’s precisely this unfortunate example of a-historic thinking, grounded in the desire to obliterate the past, that has led us to set up a programme in which we explicitly try to include the past in our thinking about the future: “What is past is prologue”.