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22 October - 13 November
FoSS and ESRC logos

Playful Café

Creating new connections through play

poster advertising event with cartoon child and town in background

My local area theme

What’s on offer?

The Playful Café will celebrate new connections created through play. We will offer music, food, (board) games and a range of immersive and fun activities that support building inter-generational and intercultural bridges. We will challenge you in an engaging and informal environment to use play for the creation of new connections while simultaneously developing creativity, compassion, and wellbeing. Visit to find out more.

What’s it about?

The Covid pandemic revealed many short falls and brought a multitude of things that were taken for granted to the foreground. In order to achieve positive change in a post-covid world there seems to be ample space to create new connections around the new expectations that have arisen. New connections, which can be catalysed through play. By using the notion of play we can enter a space that allows us to think and create. We can push an idea, combine it, contradict it, relocate it, stretch it and see where all that leads. At the same time, the speed of change across society requires a shift in approach where you can develop and try something in a very short space of time. Play creates this space. On top of that, play is increasingly recognised as both a fundamental part of the human experience and basic biological need at every stage in life.

Who’s leading the event?

Maarten Koeners and Adam Lusby in collaboration with Make Tank. Maarten is a biomedical researcher by training, and over the years he has become passionate about strengthening the link between learning and joy through play and compassion. Maarten integrate insights in the physiology of play and playful learning with his academic practice. Adam is a Senior Lecturer in Entrepreneurship at the University of Exeter Business School with a focus on circular economy, innovation and technology. Adam is an architect by training, and this has led him focus on the emerging regenerative circular economy. MakeTank is a cultural lab for social change; a creative home for local and artistic communities to generate culture that moves people.

Open to

Open to all. Please RSVP on the Eventbrite and feel free to bring along family, friends and colleagues without tickets. The more the merrier!

Of particular interest to