The “Commoning Europe” project aims to rediscovery the Public Good as the foundation of Europe.
“Commoning” refers to initiatives concerning material or immaterial resources shared among a community of users who determine by themselves the rules on management, use, enrichment of their resource; it is also based on a set of collaborative and contributive practices. This movement is now experiencing a boom in Europe.
Such initiatives are often carried out by private organizations (associations, informal communities, etc.) designated as “commoners”. Although they often emerge without elected representatives and public administrations, they must nevertheless find support and legitimacy with them to continue. A growing number of local governments are also seeking to develop approaches around the commons.
The project intends to investigate different approaches to the commons at European level, in terms of relations between Commoners and Public Institutions and in relation to overcoming legal, organizational and other difficulties.
The project partners, Biblioteca di pace (Italy), Municipality of Campi Bisenzio (Italy), Municipality of Fagaras (Romania), Ankara Provincial Directorate of Family and Social Services (Turkey), BRAL vzw – Stadsbeweging voor Brussel (Belgium) and Open UP let youth be heard (Netherlands), will share good practices in their respective territories and will organize and attend thematic training courses/study visits to:
– Strengthen the capacities of public officials and commoners to grasp the question of the commons and build together virtuous synergies.
– Build an exchange platform between the partners to take advantage of the complementarity of their approaches, and with their European peers to develop their innovation capacity and contribute to a European deployment of the commons movement.
About 14/15 members from each partner organization will participate directly in the project, for a total of about 85 people. These will be people who are particularly interested in the topic for research reasons or because they are directly involved in the ongoing experiences. To these will be added indirect participants, members of associated partners, citizens and public officials involved in the training activities, which will be three altogether, in Fagaras, Campi Bisenzio, Utrecht. The number of indirect participants can be defined at the end of the project, however the involvement of about 100 people can be expected during the 24 months of the project development.
There are also three Short-term joint staff training events, useful to allow partners to know personally and on the spot the activities in progress involving Commoning and, also, to organize an exchange of information between those who – both public administrators and officials and ordinary citizens – are directly involved in the experiences.
Methodology to be used in carrying out the project will be based on analysis and study of ongoing experiences on the subject of Commoning; learning will take place through discussions, with participatory techniques and methods.