October 14
Hi there! In this newsletter, you can:

discover thecamp’s draft offerings / see how we work / learn what's new on the construction site / follow our virtual reality tour / hear about a CNRS-MIT symposium / meet newly hired team members / and share good news!

Offering models & principles

On the occasion of the forthcoming Steering Committee on October 17, we will present a first draft of thecamp’s future offerings. The design and contents of each of these is co-constructed through one-to-one meetings with partners as well as community workshops. We will give further updates and details in upcoming letters. Here’s a preview!

01 / transformational journeys by Walter Baets

After a successful international career in innovative education, Walter left South Africa to join thecamp. He is developping individual and collective journeys, designed to transform minds(ets),  empowering people and organizations to handle radical change. Highly personalized formats adapted to diverse needs and objectives, will engage participants and allow them to "learn by doing", through the use and application of both academic and experimental processes. The purpose is for individuals to take an active part and become "makers" of their transformation. 

02 / open innovation
by Guillaume Fichefeux

Guillaume spent years developing strategies, prospective and disruptive innovations in order to facilitate change across a wide variety of fields (mobility, collaborative economy, new value chains using IoT…). Here at thecamp, Guillaume’s work on open innovation encompasses a wide spectrum of approaches, going from made-to-measure programs using specific methodologies (inclusive design / design thinking / design fiction / creative problem-solving / block-chain prototyping, etc.) to collaborative strategies on large-scale general interest projects and challenges.

03 / youth camps
by Stéphanie Ampart

Stéphanie gathers, cross-pollinates, and surrounds herself with talented people to share solutions and create positive impact. She has over 20 years of experience in communication, events and change management. Today, she’s designing multiple offerings for thecamp, starting with a variety of Youth camps and Weekend camps. Her vision? Imagining new ways of interacting with children & teenagers through various scenarios involving them in everyday campus life, empowering them to be active change-makers of our world.

04 / thematic summits by Stéphanie Ampart

Stéphanie is also leading a reflection on thematic summits. The idea of these short "marathon-formats" is to bring engaged communities together to share experiences, be inspired, and take action. For a more disruptive approach, participants will be able to join by themselves or as a group (with their family for example).

05 / acceleration by talented stranger #1

He or she will be the head of the startup Accelerator that will coach entrepreneurs, accompany them through strategic planning, pitching, experimentation and funding processes, allowing them to grow into viable actors of tomorrow’s societies with scalable & life-changing innovations. We're currently looking for the perfect match!

06 / urban-lab by talented stranger #2

He or she will lead the urban-lab where corporate executives, researchers, entrepreneurs and students will experiment both at thecamp and on the field to invent the smart cities in which we want to live. Strong partnerships with local authorities, cities and governments as well as with the E.U., will be at the core of the lab’s work. We're scouting for the right candidate for this position.

AGILE-cockpit ready for take-off

The countdown has started. There are 352 days left before thecamp’s Grand Opening. This means achieving outstanding work within a short period, and boosting our creativity and effectiveness has been part of Guillaume’s job for the past few months!
Until thecamp opens, we are experimenting various Open Innovation methodologies on ourselves. Armed with post-it notes, Legos, colorful pens & thinking, Guillaume transformed our pop-up house into an Agile-cockpit, where we all sprint every Friday and establish ambitious roadmaps to do great things as individuals and as a team.


Every visit to thecamp’s construction site brings a surprise. The height of the wooden residential buildings is rising by the day; on the hub’s future location, more and more pylons are being assembled and create a beautiful geometrical prefiguration of thecamp’s final pebble shape; the incubators are also rising and are a great representation of the measure and scale of what is being created here.

The workers are highly enthusiastic and being on-site is always punctuated by smiles, waving, hand-shakes and mutual awe at the sight of the accomplished (and yet to be accomplished) work.

Meet Paulino. He’s been a form setter for over 15 years. He’s used to having to adapt and change plans, which happens all the time in his field. He’s incredibly excited to be part of the construction team. One of the daily challenges, he said, is working while standing on an aerial lift. He is one of the 97 people building thecamp every day. This portrait is the first of a series paying tribute to the people of thecamp.


After the success of the Rencontres Économiques d’Aix-en-Provence, thecamp Virtual Reality embarked on its own journey. It travelled from the pop-up house to Aix-en-Provence for the French Tech Weeks 2016, then to the nearby Crédit Agricole Alpes-Provence HQ, later to Marseille for the SmartCity Forum. A few days ago, it went all the way to Paris on the occasion of Sodexo’s 50th Anniversary and was introduced last night to Christian Nibourel, CEO of Accenture France, and its management teams. You can follow #thecampVR's past and future adventures with this hashtag on our social pages.
#thecampVR installation at the FTWKS16
#thecampVR installation for Sodexo's 50th anniversary
Jean-Claude Gaudin, Mayor of Marseille and Vice President of the French Senate
Sophie Bellon, Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of Sodexo


thecamp + CNRS + MIT =  a symposium on City Sciences on October 21 in Paris.
Walter Baets, our creative creator in charge of Education, will give the opening speech. If you like interesting lectures, enriching exchanges, nice people and good coffee, you should definitely join. Don’t forget to enroll; it’s free.

Hiring / hired!

We are currently looking for talented individuals to complete our team across various fields: urban-lab, startup accelerator, IT, graphic design... Check out our LinkedIn page for more details.
We're also happy to announce that we have a new team member! Welcome to Tamzin as our new Office Manager.
Tamzin was born in the U.K. and is gifted with a wonderful British sense of humor – she once said thecamp is the best thing since the invention of sliced bread. We liked it so much we’re currently printing out stickers of it. She’s also very patient and organized — needless to say we love it. She has spent the last 20 years working in industry and more precisely in microelectronics and photovoltaics. During that time, she gained considerable experience in team and project leadership, communications and event management. More recently she qualified as a personal sports coach and hopes to contribute to the organization of thecamps’ onsite sporting activities.

Last but not least – Good news!

We are proud to announce that Le Groupe La Poste joined thecamp as a founding partner and look forward to working together on urban logistics, Silver Economy or innovative services based on IoT.

In November 2015, Crédit Agricole Alpes Provence was the very first founding partner to join thecamp. Today, after collaborating at a regional level, we are very happy to continue this partnership on a national scale with Crédit Agricole SA !