Welcome to the new C-MAKERS online platform and the 4th year of the CITYMAKERS China-Europe program!

Author Katja Hellkötter
Published November 2019

Welcome to C-MAKERS online platform and the 4th year of the program!

CITYMAKERS China – Germany was co-initiated in 2016 by CONSTELLATIONS International and the Robert Bosch Stiftung with the intention to leverage the collective intelligence of a Sino-German group of people who create novel models for liveable cities. The gap we saw and hoped to fill: Complementing the Sino-European cooperation sphere with a social innovation, creativity and culture-focused approach to sustainable urban development.

What is on the horizon in the 4th year of program?

We have set 3 goals: Deepen, Focus, Transform.


In 2016, we embarked with the idea to tackle thematic blind spots within Sino-German cooperation that we did not see covered by other players: Some key topics had moved into focus: Urban Farming, Future of Housing/Living, Cultural Memory, Urban-Rural Connections and Healthy City.  In the CITYMAKERS-Incubator cross cultural teams worked on joint project ideas. Some of the results inc: Two case studies (on urban farming projects and on co-housing) were conducted, a Sino-German garden was found, and a  ‘New Wuhan Narrative’ was spotted as a blind spot. Some of the actors participated in the Social Entrepreneurship Lab in 2019 and developed their ideas further. However, good projects take time to mature and go through various iteration loops before they are ready to evolve into something impactful.

We decided that in the 4th year, we would like to support 5 existing projects to achieve some substantial tangible result. The CITYMAKERS-Accelerator is now open for applications to those who want to pitch their projects. The acceleration process will kick-off with a 5-day Deep Dive Lab on February 14th 2020 in Berlin. The results will be presented at the prestigious AEDES Architecture Forum in autumn 2020.


Taking into account that a growing number of creative people is moving from China to Berlin, we see a space for CITYMAKERS to act as a Sino-European dialogue-maker “just in front of our door”. In the year ahead we will focus on further cultivating this space in Berlin: We will host a regular CITYMAKERS-Salon where we facilitate thematic exchange related to the future of liveable cities as much as connect people in an informal setting. Furthermore, we will offer an explorative format of CITYMAKERS-Walks and investigations, during which we will identify and discuss locations that represent topics of joint relevance for the future of living in Berlin as well as in Europe and China. This does not mean, however, that we are not open to collaboration outside Berlin, but in our reach out to other cities we will clearly focus on actors who show proactive initiative and who see value in using the CITYMAKERS’s umbrella for their actions. We are therefore excited about an upcoming regional action which is a CITYMAKERS-Ruhr Network Event at the Impact Hub Essen in November 2019 hosted by CITYMAKERS-project partner Sebastian Schlecht.

Contact us if you want to partner with us and cultivate a local CITYMAKERS field of actors in your city or village!

Email Katja Hellkötter


How could CITYMAKERS 2.0. look like? – With the Robert Bosch Stiftung funding cycle closing in autumn 2020 we are now faced with the opportunity to innovate further: How could a new social business model for CITYMAKERS look like? Who could be interested as new collaborators, and at the bottom line: What is our core value to others? 

Launching our new online platform under a new name, we decided first of all to go for a reduction: „C-MAKERS.de“. With this name we want to indicate and catalyze the development of new possibilities: „C“ stands for many things: City of course, but also Countryside: urban and rural development are two sides of one coin, as we highlighted in a few contributions in 2018, and there is even a trend of  ‘anti-urbanization’ going on in China right now. Of course, C* stands for China since we believe that a unique positioning of our network are our China connections and knowledge. Further meanings of C* that matter to us include: Community, Constellations, Creativity,Culture, Crossing, Co-working/living, Cooperation, and last but not least Courage and Curiosity! So in any case we will stay curious and open and will investigate what kind of new opportunities are emerging for us!

If you wish to join our activities, partner with us or just stay updated please contact us and/or subscribe to our mailing list below!

Contact us

Katja Hellkoetter, Founder CONSTELLATIONS and Program Lead CITYMAKERS, on behalf of the  CITYMAKERS core-team