a public inconvenience


Up to 20 participants will be selected to explore the experience of public toilets in Amsterdam.

To be considered for participation, researchers and practitioners are invited to send us a compelling public toilet story (see The Stories for inspiration), an optional toilet photograph, a brief biography, and a short rationale outlining your interest in the workshop. This document should not exceed two pages.

Possible themes and questions that will be explored during the workshop include:

Personal Interaction / Site of Communication
- How do people respond to, and interact with, people they encounter in public toilets?
- How is this different in male and female toilets?
- When are toilet attendants present and how do people respond to their presence?
- What kinds of asynchronous and synchronous communication can be found in public toilets?
- How does the use of personal mobile technologies (e.g. mobile phones) affect both those people locally present and those remotely connected?

Public Place / Private Practice
- Public toilets are often gender specific spaces. How do men and women use them differently?
- What can't you do in a public toilet that you can do in your bathroom at home?
- What do you bring into a public toilet that you would never bring into your bathroom at home?
- How is a balance can be achieved between privacy for occupants and publicity of location?

Toilets in Context
- How do location and time affect the experience of a public toilet?
- How have public toilets have been re-appropriated?
- How does the spatial organisation of a public toilet affect and reflect the experience of the place it is situated in?
- What kinds of technologies in toilets can we recognize as culturally specific?

Toilet Values
- Why would a toilet want a blog?
- What makes a public toilet "good"?
- How do toilet vending machines reflect social and cultural values?
- What isn't socially acceptable to bring into a toilet?

double toilet