Test_Lab: Who Wants To Be…?

Witnessing the largest cuts in state spending since World War II, everyone in the Netherlands seems to have a strong opinion on what tax money should, or should not, be spent on. As a result, large public protests have been organized in response to the proposed public expenditure reductions in education, healthcare, and culture. None of these demonstrations seemed to bear fruit however, giving rise to a feeling among Dutch citizens that their voices are not being heard. But what would happen when everyone got a say in how public money is distributed? Would education, healthcare and culture really benefit from such a democratic model? And would the end result be a solid public spending policy or a poor compromise?

Test_Lab: Who Wants to Be…? was a social experiment in the form of a raucous game show developed by art collective The People Speak. All visitors chiped in 10 EUR in advance to enter the game, after which they brainstormed, argued, and voted on how to spend the collective money. Questions around value, worth and common ideals simmered under the surface of this ‘direct democratic game show’. A past performance of Who Wants To Be…? resulted in the collective purchase of a woodland, but participants have also proposed to fire the host and to simply get their money back. Everything is possible in Who Wants To Be…? What is certain is that participants have a say in it.  In the Test_Lab: Who Wants To Be it was a 350 euro decision to commission an artist to design a new doorbell for V2! Brilliant 🙂

You can watch event stream and/or event teaser on the V2 website 

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