a fund for the future
Hilde Koenders, commissioned by the Prince Bernhard Cultural Foundation
This century will see a great mutation in our way of thinking, the distribution of wealth and the different ways to do research. In theory, the dominant bipolar functioning of society will disappear in favour of a holistic vision where several streams of thought will mingle and strive to become one.
The 21st century will embrace the growing need to bridge the two brain halves; to blend the rational with the intuitive, to discern the mathematical with the instinctive and to fuse the technological with the anthropological. Early signs of these mutations are already visible in society today and are a strong indication that this is the direction for the future development of research; research for a better life in a better and more sustainable world.
Already today we encounter more and more people taking on a “slash” position; the entrepreneur/adventurer/artist/philanthropist, and so on. I therefore endorse the idea that we will live in a slash society, where one can seamlessly connect different roles so that the advantages and setbacks of each function will be offset by each other, thriving from one another and educating one another.
Therefore the idea of the Hybrid House is born:
An initiative that will seek to join the scientific and technological disciplines with the humanities, autonomous design and the arts. My goal is to set up a research-driven virtual institute: a Hybrid House fund where different institutions, universities and academies will join forces. Each participant will take care of the in-stream of creative thinkers and scientists that desire to tackle the big questions of the future, analysing them before taking other and more radical points of departure, translating these findings into scientific studies, creative concepts, products and services.
Each participating organization will ensure the functioning of his or her candidate researcher, while the Hybrid House will help fund research materials, infrastructure and interesting temporary residencies.
Recent trends indicate that the individualist age is coming to an end, making way for a period of compassion and desire to work together; people will donate their individual talents to a group and this will lead to shorter, collective and collaborative research projects and initiatives. The Hybrid House will need to have a nomadic structure, without an actual central dwelling; in light of the future, a fluid system will be favoured, allowing an organic form of co-operation fuelled by a common wish for renewal and rethinking.
The fund will not only receive submissions for projects, but also take the initiative to actively bring people, questions and resolutions together. The goal of the Hybrid House fund is to create scenarios in collaboration with its participants and to give form to the dynamic between the creative and the scientific disciplines; to open science up and render it more understandable, to finally give to our cultural system the place in society it deserves. Even more so, the Hybrid House will strive to incubate these ideas in this uncertain and aggressive period, where culture is seen by some as an unnecessary and wasteful luxury. Yet we all know that it is culture that asks the questions that dare us to grow and develop, and thus are intrinsically connected with the development of our civilization and the evolution of mankind.
This is a cause I wish to defend.