We are all immigrants


The ongoing urbanization challenges us on a daily basis. Focussing on the environmental topics of livability, we often forget to think about the human factor in this changing environments - where do feel at home? where do you feel happy?. As the number of people moving to big cities rises, aren’t we all becoming immigrants looking for a sense of home?

This is not just an interesting topic when we look at the future of our cities, but for the whole world. Not all people are on the move to surround themselves with vibrant cities, some have to leave their ‘homes’ for different and more though reasons. 

The future of cities is often visualized as a high-tech, high-speed environment. What’s the impact of this scenario on humanity? Everyone deserves a sense of home, and so we have to think about the soft, emotional side of our urban environments.

As houses are becoming smaller in urban environments, the city is becoming an extension of home. And so, the feeling of home can exist in multiple places and spaces, at any time. Boundaries are blurring, public or private, indoor or outdoor, at any time.


The Life at Home 2018 research of IKEA shows a rising number of people all over the world say there are places where they feel more at home than the space they live in. With their study, IKEA explores what gives people the feeling of home, and where they go find it. That goes beyond four walls. IKEA calls a new era of life at home and it’s taking place within and beyond four walls.

60% of people are ready to create a life at home that’s different from the one they were brought up in, says IKEA. More and more people seek experiences outside of the home that will help us grow as a person. 

What’s home look like? It’s becoming a network of places and spaces. Neighbourhoods and communities have a important role in creating a touch of home. We take more traditional routines and home activities into other locations, and more of the outside in. 

You can read more interesting insights and numbers in the IKEA Life at Home Report 2018 here.

Designer Sia Hurtigkarl Degel designed the campaign 'Multi-Locals' upon the question: ‘where are you a local?’. Cities are becoming a melting pot of different nationalities, cultures, ages, genders, and so on. The campaign celebrates multi-locality by translating answers to this question into material and shapes.

Visual stories of former homes in local streets, images of personal objects recalling memories or snapshots from the native nature. All references which people use to describe the feeling of being a local. An interesting and inspiring way to highlight the importance of the human-side in places and spaces.


Focussing on the human, soft side of the city is of great importance when we want to keep the quality of life vital in this rapid growing environments. Creating connections of spaces, places and people will create an experience of home in the whole city, open for everyone.

Want to talk about the future of cities? Please let me know, I would love to hear your story!