Smart Oxford Playable City® Commission open for submissions

Smart Oxford Playable City® Commission open for submissions

The Smart Oxford Playable City Commission puts people and play at the heart of the City of Oxford, inviting creatives from around the world to respond to the theme of the Shared City. Applications open until 20 June.

Smart Oxford and Watershed announce a new global call for submissions for the newly created ‘Smart Oxford Playable City Commission 2017’. Applicants from across the globe are invited to respond to the theme the Shared City.

 Oxford is small city with a global reputation, one of the fastest growing cities in the UK with a rich heritage that attracts seven million tourists every year. This brand new commission asks creatives to uncover, reveal and explore the less known parts of Oxford in new and exciting ways. How do we reveal the layers underneath? How can we use technology to encourage new connections in the city? How can the Shared City reflect the diversity of experience, from visitors to residents?

 The Smart Oxford Playable City Commission is a brand new competition, challenging creatives from around the world to produce an idea that puts people and play at the heart of Oxford. Smart Oxford will work with Playable City to choose a project that will capture the imagination of those who live, visit and work in and around Oxford. This is the first time the Playable City model has been used in the UK outside of the annual Award.  

 Artists, designers, architects, technologists and creative practitioners who can demonstrate a history of delivering high-quality, innovative practice are invited to propose distinctive ideas on the theme, using smart city technologies, that will make the city of Oxford more connected and collaborative.  The call for applications will remain open until 20 June 2017.

In addition to £30,000, the commission offers dedicated practical support and guidance as well as access to local support to enable the winning team to realise their ideas. They will also become part of the vibrant international Playable City network, providing extensive opportunities for collaboration.

Sebastian Johnson, Vice-Chair of Smart Oxford and Principal Economic Development Officer at Oxford City Council, says: “We are partnering with Playable City during 2017 to deliver this flagship project to help people understand the opportunities and benefits that can be achieved through the Internet of Things and the combination of technology, data and communities. This is an innovation-led project that is open, inclusive, accessible and engaging. Our hope is that it will catch the imagination of all who live, visit and work in and around Oxford.”

Hilary O'Shaughnessy, Producer of Playable City, says: “We are delighted to share this brilliant new opportunity to partner with our first UK city outside of Bristol. Working across the globe from Texas to Tokyo, we have seen the power of creative technology and play to showcase the diversity of experience in cities in new ways. We are excited to see what will be commissioned for Oxford.”


To apply, please download the Applicant Overview


For all things Playable City visit |


 For all things Smart Oxford visit



Rebecca Ladbury | | + 44 (0) 7941 224 9795

Danya Agababian | | + 44 (0) 7779 635147

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