About

Playspace helps people understand, challenge, and change the rules that govern their daily lives. It is through the creation of 'play space' that we can reframe reality; allowing us to imagine and design better ways to work, live and learn together.

For this purpose Playspace develops tools. These range from highly structured games to facilitate complex participatory design processes, to playful explorations that help communities to get back in touch with what intrinsically motivates them.

Bruno Setola
Bruno Setola likes to look at life as though it were a game. This offers a new and inspiring perspective, perfect for problem solving. This method can be relevant to everyone, regardless of how much of a ‘gamer’ they are. In order to bring game thinking to a wider audience, Bruno set up Playspace; a company which helps people understand, challenge, and change the rules that govern their daily lives, through the use of specialised tools and game thinking. These range from highly structured games to facilitate complex participatory design processes, to playful explorations that help communities to get back in touch with what intrinsically motivates them. This can lead to reframing reality and working out new, better ways to work, live and learn together.

Alongside Playspace, since 2012 Bruno has been running the Gamification department at the Willem de Kooning Academy. The department has a strong focus on social design practice and the minor 'PowerPlay' discusses potential future scenarios and new rules for playing well together in society.

Playspace works with a group of experts, including:

Leon Gommans
Leon was original co-founder of Playspace back in 2014. He calls himself a Context Broker, helping authorities and businesses in the port of Rotterdam and Amsterdam connect open data from multiple sources. After a year of developing applied games together for higher education (Placemaker) as well as port logistics (Port Call), Leon pursued a specialisation in port logistics, whereas Bruno kept the Playspace moniker and continued to work for a broad range of clients. Leon went on to become Teqplay working full-time on harbour logisitics solutions. They occasionally brainstorm together about gameful solutions for port logistics.

Remko van der Pluijm
Remko has collaborated on the game design of several Playspace games, such as (Placemaker), the 'Stress Test' for the City of Delft and a decision making game for the City of Rotterdam. Remko is also a long time colleague at Willem de Kooning, where we ran gamification classes. Remko is the man that can seamlessly interconnect philosophy, social design, game design, storytelling, politics and marketing. This makes it a delight to work with him, not in the least because he is also a great oracle that will give you custom lectures on anything that you struggle with, any time of the day.

Erik Gille
Way back in 2008 Bruno and Erik started an advertising agency called Setola & Gille. Together they perfected their creative method 'concepting by walking around' working on social campaigns and area development for the city of Rotterdam. For Playspace, Erik also co-hosted two workshops for the Rotterdam Port authorities. Femke Cuijpers and Erik Gille run the creative communications agency Creatieve Kwesties. Since the summer of 2018 PlaySpace and Creatieve Kwesties once again share an office space.

Rejane Dal Bello
Rejane has designed the strong and graphic Playspace identity and website. She is an award winning Graphic Designer and Illustrator with a great range of iconic design cases. She began her career working for renowned international branding & design agencies, which is how she met Bruno, at Studio Dumbar in 2006. They stayed close ever since. She has her own studio in London and gives lectures all over the world about her drive to use graphic design to truly make the world a better place.

Tereza Ruller
Tereza did the graphic design for two of Playspace's games (Total View and Switch) that has since become Playspace's trademark of barebones product design. She creates her own unique, highly experimental and playful performances and travels the world with these. With Vit Ruller she also took care of Playspace's studio photography and website programming.

Jasper Schelling
Jasper and Bruno founded the Kolabo foundation back in 2010, investigating the effect of new media on society. It led to many great insights yet moreover opened the door to an iterative design approach that has proven very effective. Jasper explores the intersection between user experience design and data science.

Rob Hebing
Rob Hebing is an inventor and engineer with a keen human understanding. He was one of the Kolabo participants and we stayed in touch ever since. When Rob Hebing and Nick Koning were still KoningHebing, they helped Bruno to translate his concept for an interactice LED tree into 'Boom!' Rob's level of craftmanship is extremely high, creating elegant solutions in custom design, hardware and software. He is currently an innovation engineer at CEAD, working on the biggest 3D printing machine in the world.

Employees and interns at Playspace (in chronological order):

Hristina Maas
Hristina was Playspace's first and (so far) only employee. She initially focused on her interior design background, working on creating a 'Living Lab' for education. She soon emerged as the ultimate host, keen on turning workshops into healthy and socially energising experiences. She is also Bruno's personal 'Brain Jockey' when it comes to coming up with new and refreshing workshop formats.

Lily Higgins
Lily did her internship, combined with her graduation in Bruno's Gamification class. For this she did extensive research and prototyping (leading to her graduation work) for Playspace. It resulted in a close collaboration that led to 'Future Flex'. Lily is now working at Zeewaardig, that partnered up with Playspace to further develop Future Flex into a Service Design-oriented product.

Nami Kim
Nami was an intern in 2018 and worked on a toolkit for playgrounds. She helped prototype and organise test sessions. For an international school, she even made a Korean version of the prototype to test on Korean children. She will soon start her graduation in Bruno's 'PowerPlay' department at WDKA.

Thea Christy-Parker
Thea is currently doing an internship at Playspace. As a student at the Man & Communication department of the Design Academy Eindhoven, she created a gamification project about a sustainable future for our planet.

Interested in an internship at Playspace? Feel free to contact Bruno.