Cooperative City in Quarantine #6: BENI COMUNI – IT

  I beni comuni urbani (Urban Commons) sono tutti quegli spazi, servizi e risorse che favoriscono il benessere delle comunità locali e sono gestiti da queste in modo diretto. Prendersi cura di questi beni di comunità vuol dire aiutare i cittadini e le cittadine, che vedono soddisfatte le loro esigenze immediate. I beni comuni possono […]

Cooperative City in Quarantine #5: TURISMO- IT

Episodio #5: Turismo Quali danni ha subito l’industria del turismo in seguito alla crisi covid-19, e quali opportunità questa può offrire? Grande business, quello del turismo in Europa: oltre 12 milioni di lavoratori impiegati nell’UE, un settore che rappresenta il 3.9% del suo PIL, con 9.25 trilioni di dollari di entrate complessive nel 2019 e […]

Cooperative City in Quarantine #4: SPAZI DI COMUNITA’- IT

Episodio #4: Centri di Comunità e network ONG Attive (ACTive NGOs) È ormai chiaro a tutti che l’epidemia di Coronavirus ha cambiato le abitudini quotidiane di tutti noi, e il modo in cui le persone vivono la propria comunità e il proprio quartiere. Cosa possono fare i centri comunitari e le ONG per continuare a offrire […]

Cooperative City in Quarantine #3: CULTURA– IT

Episodio # 3: Sfide e soluzioni potenziali per il settore culturale Viviamo tempi difficili, siamo spaventati e isolati nelle nostre case. E tuttavia in tanti hanno chiamato a raccolta le loro energie e avviato iniziative in supporto alle nostre comunità, malgrado tutte le complessità. Con Cooperative City in Quarantine vogliamo raggiungervi con queste storie, condividere […]

Cascina Roccafranca – The Public-Civic Governance of Space

Cascina Roccafranca is a multi-functional community centre operating in a building owned by the City of Turin. The centre is managed through a cooperation between public and civic actors: a scheme that offers a valuable governance model while providing a wide range of social and cultural activities.

Cooperative City in Quarantine #2: CIBO – IT

# 2: Sistemi di produzione e distribuzione alimentare Nel secondo episodio di ‘Cooperative City in Quarantine’ (27.3.20) abbiamo ospitato esperti di diverse città europee sul tema dei sistemi di produzione e distribuzione alimentare. Hanno condiviso con noi le loro prospettive sulla questione alimentare, sulle sfide da affrontare in questo periodo di COVID-19 e sulle iniziative […]

Cooperative City in Quarantine #1: INTRO – IT

Viviamo tempi difficili, abbiamo temuto per la nostra salute e quella dei nostri cari, e ci siamo trovati costretti all’isolamento nelle nostre case. Malgrado tutta la complessità che ci siamo trovati a vivere, in tanti hanno chiamato a raccolta le loro energie, avviato iniziative in supporto alle comunità di appartenenza e fatto della crisi un’opportunità. […]

Nova Cvernovka: a creative and cultural centre breathing new life into an abandoned school complex

Nova Cvernovka is a community and cultural space located in a former Secondary Chemical school complex in the outskirts of Bratislava. Nova Cvernovka gives home to a community formerly located in a thread factory downtown, providing studios for several artists and local entrepreneurs. By bringing together complementary social functions, it aims to create a better […]

Uno spazio di comunità pazzesco – Ex OPG di Napoli

Abbiamo incontrato a Napoli gli attivisti del Centro Sociale Ex OPG Occupato – Je so’ pazzo, un ex ospedale psichiatrico che è stato sottratto all’abbandono, sistemato e restituito alla città e al quartiere. Je so pazzo’ è il nome che hanno scelto, “perché in un mondo dove la normalità è fatta da disoccupazione, precarietà, discriminazioni […]

Co-Hab Athens: changing the ownership paradigm in Athens

Co-Hab Athens is a research project which aims to elaborate long-term models of collective housing ownership, claiming the quality of housing as a right. Active since January 2016, it aspires to act as an exchange platform for urban researchers and activists on the issue of collective ownership, to propose new policies and to promote the […]

Exploring FRIEDA 23: a media and arts space in the city centre of Rostock

FRIEDA 23 is a venue for art and media production. Located in Rostock, Northern Germany, it was opened as a result of the cooperation of various institutes in the city – Kunstschule Rostock, the Institute For New Media, the Lichtspieltheater Wundervoll, the Lokalradio LOHRO, and other organisations who wanted to work in a shared space. […]

The Art of Traveling Light: Tourism with a Positive Impact

The extractive nature of mass tourism is made possible by tourist behaviour, missing regulations and lacking alternatives. There has been very little work done to make tourism more responsible, sustainable and enriching for local communities. While there is a growing number of emerging NGOs, cooperatives and social enterprises to channel tourism revenues into socially meaningful […]

The Bip/Zip strategy – empowering local communities in priority districts of Lisbon

Based on the experience developed over the past ten years in Lisbon, the Bip/Zip program is currently at the basis of the URBACT Transfer Network Com.Unity.Lab which aims at sharing the knowledge with other cities across Europe. In this article the different tools of the strategy are outlined.  The Portuguese capital city of Lisbon counts […]

Tackling urban poverty in Bari

The City of Bari joined the Com.Unity.Lab Urbact network to be inspired by the Bip/Zip program to improve its local strategy. In this interview Vitandrea Marzano from the City of Bari explains to us what are the key priorities in the city and how they are developing collaborative strategies to tackle urban poverty.  What is […]

HALLO: going beyond real estate speculation to create community spaces in Hamburg

The HALLO: collective aims to reactivate not publicly accessible spaces in the city of Hamburg. The collective organizes a yearly summer festival, HALLO: Festspiele, and it is developing a strategy to gain long-term concepts for unused space and funding to support its activities. Among their projects, Schaltzentrale, an experimental neighbourhood office, is specifically dedicated to […]

Masia Can Calopa: Cooperative Vineyard Plantation in Catalonia

The cooperative L’Olivera manages agriculture projects with social impact in the countryside outside Barcelona. Last autumn we visited Masia Can Calopa, where L’Olivera has cultivated a vineyard plantation and which produces Catalonian employing youngsters with mental disabilities, who live and work at Masia Can Calopa de Dalt. How did the project L’Olivera started? The project […]

Fusolab Roma: Regenerating the periphery through education

Fusolab is a non-profit community hub in Rome’s Eastern periphery, offering educational activities within the arts, communication, technology, new media, sports and a variety of other fields. With a strong focus on the neighbouring Alessandrino and Torre Maura districts, among the most disadvantaged areas of the Italian capital, Fusolab works closely with local communities, connecting […]

Ecomuseo Casilino: an open-air museum in the Eastern periphery of Rome

Ecomuseo Casilino is a museum that operates beyond the standard walls of a museum. The Associazione Culturale Ecomuseo Casilino Ad Duas Lauros is committed to collect cultural resources, based on what local communities consider as such. Besides all the historical, archaeological and artistic heritage, the association also explores objects of cultural value that local residents […]

Gólya: cooperative management in Budapest

Gólya is a community house in Budapest. It has been working for six years on Bókay János utca in the 8th District, and currently it is relocating to a new venue because of increased gentrification of its neighbourhood and the consequent sale of their former rented venue. In this interview with Marci Biro, one of […]

Fostering community cooperation through a multifunctional private space: the case of Via Baltea in Torino

Via Baltea is a multifunctional space initiated and run by Sumisura, a cooperative of architects and social workers who operate in the field of urban regeneration and local development. Via Baltea features artisan workshops, a community kitchen and spaces for services for citizens and the neighbourhood. What is Via Baltea and how was it created? […]

Mindspace: A consultancy for urban regeneration in Budapest

Mindspace is a non-profit organization based in Budapest and founded in 2011. It manages cultural urban projects with a focus on smart and livable neighbourhoods and sustainability, using participatory methods and recreational activities. Ádám Kobrizsa, co-founder of Mindspace, talks about the history of the project and its future. How did Mindspace start? We opened Mindspace […]

A Város Mindenkié: resisting homelessness and housing crisis in Hungary

A Város Mindenkié, in English The City is for All, was established in 2009 to advocate for housing rights in Hungary. Homeless people, those experiencing housing poverty and their allies, work together to overcome homelessness in Hungary by campaigning for social housing policies and for a homeless care system and by fighting against the discrimination […]

Deviszont Közösségi Tér: a new community space for teenagers in the periphery of Budapest

Deviszont is a community space located in the suburban area of Budapest. It offers non-formal educational activities and space for the socialization of disadvantaged working class teenagers. Deviszont was recently opened by a group of young professionals following a long process consisting of organisation and fundraising, as well as the refurbishment of a vacant building. […]

ShareTown: digital technology as a tool to envision cooperation between citizens and government

ShareTown is a fictional town populated by a cast of characters, which sets out to create a positive vision of what a preferred future for cities might be. Community needs are attained in ShareTown through self-organization, as well as democratic and inclusive growth. A new relationship between citizens and local governments emerges in this new and […]

Dynamo Velostation: making urban cycling easier for commuters in Bologna

Dynamo Velostation was opened in 2015 with the support of the Incredibol tender promoted by the Municipality of Bologna. Behind Parco della Montagnola, few hundred meters away from Bologna Central Train Station, it became an intermodal hub for urban cyclists and commuters. It provides a safe bicycle parking space and a variety of services, giving […]

Mercato Sonato: a hub for music and arts in a former market hall

Mercato Sonato is a project to requalify an unused market hall in Bologna. It was developed by an association of musicians in need of a rehearsal space for their orchestra, and it soon evolved into a multimodal hub for music and performative arts. Involving many associations whose work ranges from music to arts and crafts, […]

Urban redevelopment at the neighbourhood scale: the case of Bagni Pubblici di via Agliè 9 in Torino

Bagni Pubblici di via Agliè 9 is a community space where more than 15 organizations, associations, traders, schools and institutions, work to improve the quality of life of their district and to encourage relations between neighbors. In this interview, Erika Mattarella presents the projects and its importance in the neighborhood of Barriera di Milano.   […]

Affordable space for artists – Berlin’s Studio Commissioner

The role of the Studio Commissioner for Berlin exists since 1993. After the city’s reunification it became evident that affordable space for artists would become increasingly rare and contested; therefore the position of the Studio Commissioner was proposed by organised artists to tackle this challenge. Later it was installed within the KulturWerk, a part of the berufsverband […]

The power of co-creation in redesigning Valencia’s waterfront

In the early 2000s, La Marina de Valencia hosted editions the America’s Cup and the F1 Grand Prix Race. These events attracted investment and fueled rapid infrastructure growth, but they also left behind a staggering debt. Many of the installations put in place were afterwards abandoned with no future plan. Since 2016, La Marina’s new […]

Das Packhaus – a start-up community in a temporary-use project

Das Packhaus is a project of Paradocks an international think- and do-tank for reuse of vacant buildings inVienna. Since 2014 Das Packhaus has been showing the potential for temporary use in the city of Vienna thanks to a community of 85 companies coming from different fields. A place where companies can support each other and […]

PiediPerTerra Primavalle

Il 28 Aprile 2018 un gruppo variegato di abitanti di Primavalle e di altre aree di Roma si è incontrato per conoscere assieme la storia ed il futuro del quartiere durante un Piedixterra:. Un’esplorazione urbana insieme ai cittadini e ai comitati di quartiere per guardare la città in un modo diverso: osservare i luoghi come […]

PiediPerTerra Casal Bertone

Il 5 Luglio un gruppo di cittadini di Casal Bertone e di altre zone di Roma si è incontrato per conoscere insieme la storia ed il futuro del quartiere durante un Piedixterra, un’esplorazione urbana insieme ai cittadini e ai comitati di quartiere per guardare la città in un modo diverso: osservare i luoghi come appaiono […]

Città e Lavoro

PER UN TERRITORIO CHE LAVORA Attrarre risorse per attivare il territorio Le politiche di sviluppo territoriale dal 1800 in poi in Europa sono state fortemente connotate da una visione di sviluppo espansivo del modello industriale, che ha strutturato la pianificazione delle città e dei territori circostanti. Tutte le infrastrutture sono state a servizio di una […]

Roadmap to Digital Urban Governance

Interactive Cities an URBACT network that explored how digital, social media and user generated content can improve today´s urban management in European cities, whatever size. This challenge has been tackled in two ways. Firstly, as an opportunity to redefine and deepen the concept of citizenship and civic engagement today, providing a path to spark cohesion, commonalities and shared value as well as increasing sense of place. In other words, making the most of the new channels to revisit the relationship between the individual and the local community in the digital era. Secondly, as a way to improve the quality of public services, in terms of efficiency and transparency, and even widen the current service chart provided by local authorities.

Digital media for relational urban governance

With today’s European cities hosting most of the continent’s population and urban areas being the stage for many of contemporary conflicts such as social inequality, environmental threats or economic crisis, collective action must be taken immediately. In the past years, there has been a lot of discussions about the potential role of smart technologies in […]

There’s more to Digital Democracy than just a tweet

The US presidential election results came as a surprise to many of us especially because we hadn’t encountered any testament of sweeping support towards the current president in any of our communication channels. None of our friends on Facebook seemed to support Trump, so how could he be elected? Recent public discussions have highlighted the […]

How to strengthen the position of cities in the digital domain? Amsterdam’s ecosystem of cooperation

Recent newspaper articles highlighted the controversial position of large ICT companies in terms of taxation, data management, political leverage and spreading of fake news. With Google and Facebook becoming one of the major global players in terms of turnover thanks to our digital actions, their relationship with the public interest is no longer a secondary […]

NORDBAHNHALLE – Promoting mixed-use affordable spaces in Vienna

A former warehouse has become a living lab where the spatial and economical needs of small entrepreneurs are studied in order to promote mixed-use spaces in the future Nordbahnhof district. Working with the private and the public sector, “Mischung: Possible Nordbahnhof” is helping the City of Vienna to enhance a sustainable and affordable urban growth […]

NEST Ghent – Creating a momentum through temporary use

NEST is a temporary use project in the former City Library of Ghent awaiting refurbishment and a new use. The 7,000 m2 building, was given to an alliance of organisations for temporary use until construction works begin. During its year of temporary use, the building has hosted about 50 different projects and many events and […]

De Pastory: Community services built on temporary use

De Pastory was created in 2015 in an old presbytery building and the garden on Ghent’s Heilig Hartplein. Born from a movement of local residents and organisations to protect the municipality owned building from demolition, De Pastory today gives space to community meetings, NGOs, a community kitchen, a library of tools and a bar. Aware […]

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Data Privacy Policy Our website may be used without entering personal information. Different rules may apply to certain services on our site, however, and are explained separately below. We collect personal information from you (e.g. name, address, email address, telephone number, etc.) in accordance with the provisions of German data protection statutes. Information is considered […]

Il mercato è un incubatore di imprese giovanili – YOUNG MARKET LAB

Il Young Market Lab ha riattivato gli spazi inutilizzati del mercato coperto di Carbonara di Bari tramite il coinvolgimento di giovani che hanno avviato le loro idee di micro-imprenditorialità. In preparazione del bando pubblico è stato avviato un percorso di supporto e formazione sui temi dell’economia collaborativa, del riuso degli spazi mercatali e sulle pratiche […]

Il Mercato Lorenteggio – Accompagnamento culturale dal basso nel quartiere

Il Mercato Lorenteggio si insedia nel quartiere Giambellino-Lorenteggio nella periferia sud-ovest di Milano. L’esperienza nasce per accompagnare e valorizzare le risorse sociali e culturali di un quartiere comunemente definito ‘critico’, reinterpretandolo invece come ‘laboratorio a cielo aperto’ dalle crescenti potenzialità socio-culturali. Tramite un percorso di accompagnamento agli operatori, di animazione culturale con gli abitanti e […]

Cycling for alternative systems – The Cargonomia experiment in Budapest

In Budapest, a group of enthusiastic and passionate young people came together to mix their own ingredients, in the form of independent initiatives: an organic and biodynamic farm, Zsámboki Biokert Spaces; a community-based Do it Yourself (DiY) bike workshop, Cyclonomia Spaces; and a self-organised bike messenger and delivery company, Kantaa, with an intended ‘spill’ of […]

La Food Policy di Milano – Come le politiche pubbliche incidono sul sistema alimentare della città

Nel 2014 il Comune di Milano e Fondazione Cariplo hanno siglato un accordo per la definizione e l’adozione della Food Policy: la strategia alimentare di Milano. L’adozione è avvenuta nel 2015, quando il Comune di Milano ha lanciato anche Il Milan Urban Food Policy Pact, il primo patto internazionale sule politiche alimentari urbane, sottoscritto a […]

WASTED – How to create local welfare from waste management

Based in Amsterdam since 2008, CITIES Foundation has been working to address global urban development problems by implementing solutions at the local level. CITIES first research project, Farming the City, has evolved into a social enterprise for local food distribution service, Foodlogica. In 2017, CITIES published “The Wasted City,” a book exploring models of circular economy […]

TERRITORIALISING EUROPEAN DEBATE – Preparing for the 2019 EU elections and the post-2020 funding strategy

While decisions taken in Bruxelles are increasingly recognised as affecting our daily lives, little if any discussion is taking place on what our impact on decisions of the European Commission may be. As a contribution towards the 2019 EU elections and to the post-2020 funding debates, this article wants to highlight some of the messages […]

Caught between the public and the private: urban cooperative solutions in Central Europe

In the early 2000s, some cities in the Central Eastern European region began to introduce new mechanisms for citizen participation in urban development. These attempts have remained mostly sporadic however, and the possibilities of the third sector in shaping the region’s cities have remained very limited. In order to understand the reasons that hinder the […]


Con la crescita del fenomeno dell’e-commerce, sempre più persone scelgono di acquistare ogni tipo di prodotto su internet. Squicity utilizza la piattaforma virtuale per fornire ai consumatori romani i prodotti della loro terra, rigorosamente provenienti da produzioni biologiche nelle provincie di Roma, Rieti e Viterbo. In quest’intervista Alfredo Morales, tra gli ideatori di Squicity, ci […]

Szatyorbolt – Buy and consume local

Szatyorbolt has been operating an association and a food shop within a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) scheme for the past 9 years. The shop’s aim is to bring local produce from the countryside to the city, by connecting consumers with small and mid-size farms and food producers within a radius of 50-70km from Budapest. Establishing […]

Plateau Urbain – Temporary use for new ecosystems of work

Plateau Urbain is a temporary use organisation in Paris. Established in 2013, it examines the possibilities of vacant spaces in the city, bringing together property owners with a diversity of tenants. Together with the temporary housing organisation Aurore and the architecture collective Yes We Camp, Plateau Urban was a key actor in reactivating a former […]

PIGS, from crisis to self-organisation

Southern European countries were among the hardest hit by the 2008 economic crisis. In response to the economic pressure, declining public services and drastic unemployment situation generated by the crisis and the corresponding public policies, the Southern regions of the continent became terrains of experiments in self-organisation and gave birth to new forms of the […]

Toolbox Torino – Spaces for work, made of community and stimuli

Toolbox was established in 2010 in an industrial zone of Turin. In the city’s postindustrial search for new identity and new jobs, Toolbox emerged as a new workspace for the maker scene as well as for the field of digital economy, by bringing together many emerging initiatives from these fields. The experiment of turning a […]

MAR Movilidad – Mobility initiatives for a new economic ecosystem

MAR Movilidad is the mobility hub of the Mares Madrid project, an initiative by the city of Madrid, co-funded by the European Union’s Urban Innovative Actions programme. Bringing together a variety of actors active in the city, from citizen initiatives, startups and social enterprises to cooperative networks and economic development organisations, Mares Madrid (an acronym […]

Toestand – Temporary use for mixing communities

Toestand is a temporary use organisation in Brussels, helping citizen activities and community groups access spaces at an affordable rent or for free. While the organisation undertakes the work of identifying buildings, negotiating with owners, renovating the spaces and recruiting tenants, it is also responsible for the daily management of the reactivated sites, bringing together […]

Járókelő – A platform for street maintenance

Communication between citizens and local administrations is a key element of well-functioning services. The rise of digital platforms and smartphone applications created new interfaces for communication and have shown the potential of civic tech in triggering structural change in how cities work, from civic engagement, to stronger participation in the accountability of municipalities or major […]

ZOHO – Development with a hundred investors

ZOHO or the Zomerhofkwartier near Rotterdam’s Central Station has witnessed a significant revival in the past years. The area is composed of office buildings constructed after the war, and gradually witnessing a loss of attractiveness as well as tenants over the past few decades. Although a housing corporation had purchased many properties in the area […]

Paralelní Polis – Virtual economy for community spaces

Paralelní Polis is a community space organised around the notions of bitcoin and blockchain technology. Located in Prague’s upcoming Holesovice neighbourhood, it opened its doors in 2014 to provide a physical space for discussions and activities investigating the relationship between technology and self-organisation. Decidedly “state-free,” the organisation operates with private membership fees and donations, and […]

Complementary currencies for a commons-based economy

Responses to the economic crisis of 2007-2008, and ambitions to create autonomous systems of exchange generated hundreds of complementary currencies in the past decade. Created to connect local actors, help local businesses or assure financial transparency, mutual credit systems, convertible local currencies and cryptocurrencies have evolved into mechanisms used not only in socio-economic experiments, but […]

La Cooperativa Coraggio – Le terre pubbliche come opportunità per i giovani agricoltori

A due passi dalla Trionfale si estende la tenuta agricola di Borghetto San Carlo. Un angolo di campagna a Roma Nord, Borghetto San Carlo racchiude dei casali circondati da terreni agricoli pubblici che il Comune di Roma ha affidato in gestione alla Cooperativa Coraggio. Giacomo Lepri, attivista nel movimento per le terre pubbliche incolte ai […]

Public policies in support of civic initiatives

Civic initiatives regenerating urban areas emerged all over Europe as an answer to the crisis of traditional urban policies. Often they share a conflicting attitude towards the public sector or aim at extending their independence. In the following chapter, we focus on citizens’ demand for cooperation with public administrations. Firstly, we describe some opportunities for […]

Laituri Helsinki – An urban laboratory to make strategies alive

Laituri is an urban information centre in Helsinki established in 2008. Attached to the Helsinki Municipality’s city planning department, Laituri helps disseminating information about the city’s development plans and new projects through exhibitions and presentations. Instead of being a one-directional communication channel, Laituri also acts as an interface for feedbacks from citizens: with the help […]

Regulating the Urban Commons – What we can learn from Italian experiences

The international debate on the commons has a long history but only in recent years has it started gearing towards the definition of Urban Commons and what their role is in shaping our society, especially at the wake of the economic crisis. This debate developed strongly in Italy as a result of a referendum refusing […]

Il programma Bip/Zip Lotta alla povertà nei quartieri prioritari di Lisbona

Per ridurre la povertà nei quartieri svantaggiati delle nostre città molto può anche essere fatto anche senza una forte cooperazione del governo nazionale. In questo senso, l’esperienza del Comune di Lisbona è di grande ispirazione grazie al programma Bip/Zip, ormai attivo da quasi dieci anni, che ambisce a ridurre la povertà nei quartieri svantaggiati della […]

Foundations for affordable space – a Swiss case study

While affordable space for housing and community activities in Europe has traditionally been provided by states, public companies and private corporations, the transformation of the welfare state and labour markets in the last quarter of the 20th century has gradually caused the disintegration of these institutions. The financialisation of real estate together with the growing […]

Funding the Cooperative City

Funding the Cooperative City: Community Finance and the Economy of Civic Spaces Edited by Daniela Patti & Levente Polyák (Eutropian Research & Action) Publisher: Cooperative City Books, Vienna, September 2017 Format: Paper size B5, 244 pages ISBN 978-3-9504409-0-4 The book is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) More information: Please […]

Community Land Trusts – A model to secure community access to land

Community Land Trusts (CLTs) are a model of community-led development, where local organisations develop and manage homes and other assets important to their communities, such as community enterprises, food growing or workspaces. The CLT’s main goal is to ensure that these spaces are affordable, based on the income level of the locals living in the […]

Stad in de Maak – From crisis to a shared ownership model

Stad in de Maak is an association set up to take on the redevelopment of vacant properties in Central Rotterdam, together with the local community. The association renovated six buildings, investing upfront the amount of loss the buildings were projected to generate for their owner, a housing corporation, in the coming 10 years. Stad in […]

Locality – Supporting self-organisation in local communities

Locality is the national network of ambitious and enterprising community organisations, working together so neighbourhoods thrive. They support organisations to work effectively through best practice on community enterprise, community asset ownership, local services contracting and collaboration. In a continually evolving landscape, Locality supports community enterprises to develop their organisational and business models to survive and […]

Regulating crowdfunding – International resources for local communities?

In the past years, civic crowdfunding has become an increasingly used tool by communities to help finance their urban infrastructure projects. However, while some legal contexts encourage experiments around community finance, other national regulations categorically exclude the possibility of peer-to-peer lending or crowdinvesting, thus limiting the impact crowdfunding can have in the built environment. Jan […]

Community Land Trust Bruxelles – Enabling low-income homeownership

The Community Land Trust Bruxelles was created in 2012 as an initiative of residents, activists and neighbourhood organisations. The CLT was founded as a reaction to the emerging housing crisis of Brussels, addressing the insufficiency of public tools to create social housing. With 9 homes finished and many more in the plans, the Community Land […]

A bundle of rights and obligations: Privately Owned Public Spaces

In the winter of 2007, exactly nine years before Donald Trump became president of the USA, I was a regular visitor to Trump Tower. Not as a guest or an admirer though: each time I went to 725 Fifth Avenue, I went as an inspector, on behalf of the New York Department of City Planning’s […]

Granby Four Streets CLT – From demolition to regeneration

Granby Four Streets Community Land Trust was created in 2011 to address housing issues within Liverpool’s Eighth District. With the help of local activists, architects and social investors, the organisation managed to engage the Liverpool City Council as well as housing associations and cooperatives in a Community Land Trust scheme. In this scheme, the local […]

Exploring property: Perspectives of ownership

In the last decades, ownership has become a key factor of our societies and economies. As Thomas Piketty demonstrated in his recent book Capital in the Twenty First Century, the late 20th and early 21st centuries witnessed the return of the primacy of wealth over work in economic benefits and ownership has become an increasingly […]

Homebaked – Anchoring the community through small businesses

Homebaked is a cooperative bakery in Anfield, close to the famous stadium of Liverpool FC. The bakery was set up as an alternative to the clearance of the neighbourhood by the Housing Market Renewal Initiative. The bakery is the result of an intervention of the Liverpool Biennial that gained great international visibility thanks to the […]

New institutions and cooperative finance in times of austerity

To a large extent, the global financial crisis of 2007-2008 was a result of excessive real estate speculation and the irresponsible management of investments and debts by the mainstream banking system. Already before the current crisis, a variety of new, responsible financial institutions were established according to ethical and sustainable principles in order to counterbalance […]

Rákóczi Collective – Alternatives to individual homeownership

In 2011 a dozen young people retreated for a weekend to one of the suburbs of Hungary’s capital to discuss the alternatives of individual home-ownership, and to sketch the contours of a possible model of co-housing. By Ágnes Gagyi, Csaba Jelinek, Zsuzsanna Pósfai and Márton Szarvas for Autoportret Magazine Images by Community Living initiative

SANNAS – Creating a local network of cooperation among various enterprises

SANNAS is a group of enterprises in Madrid, working in a shared space on projects with social, environmental and economic dimensions. One of the projects of SANNAS is the co-housing project Entrepatios where SATT Architects takes care of the architectural part whilst Logica Eco of the management of the stakeholders.

Lessons from community-led housing for city-makers across Europe

During the past few decades, housing has been at the forefront of community-led initiatives to guarantee the right to an affordable city. As a consequence, housing, in many respects, has been leading the way for experiments with innovative financial and organisation models for community-led urban infrastructure and development projects. Solidarity funds, shared ownership models, organisational […]

Goteo – Crowdsourcing for open communities

Goteo is a platform for civic crowdfunding founded by Platoniq, a Catalan association of culture producers and software developers. Goteo helps citizen initiatives as well as social, cultural and technological projects that produce open source results and community benefits, with crowdfunding and crowdsourcing resources. Since its launch in 2011, Goteo’s crowdfunding campaigns have mobilised more […]

Vivero de Iniciativas Ciudadanas – Mapping and co-producing citizen initiatives

Vivero de Iniciativas Ciudadanas is a platform to support citizen projects in Madrid. Initiated by the architecture office Estudio SIC, the platform maps and brings together citizen initiatives that shape the city’s various neighbourhoods, identifying their competences and needs. Based on this mapping process and the related research, Vivero de Iniciativas Ciudadanas teamed up with […]

Tartu’s new masterplan – A platform for ideas by citizens

“The trick is how to translate the masterplan to something that people can understand” The Estonian city of Tartu has recently created a new masterplan. For the Tartu Municipality, an administration with a strong focus on citizen participation and a long-term engagement with the digital transition, this was an occasion to call for proposals and […]

MÜSZI – Public functions in private spaces

Művelődési Szint (MÜSZI Art & Community Centre) is a cultural space operating on the 3rd floor of a socialist-style department store. Besides hosting events ranging from concerts to theatre performances and film screenings, Müszi also offers studios for artists, NGOs and start-up companies. Müszi stands as an unprecedented venture in Budapest, a venue that positions […]

Stiftung Trias – Taking properties out of the speculation market

Stiftung trias was established in 2002, to help community groups and co-housing projects access financing. Trias takes land off the market by separating the ownership of land and buildings: supported initiatives lease the land from the foundation in the form of a long-term Heritable Building Right (Erbbaurecht) and their lease fee is collected in a mutual […]

Casa Netural – New economy for a small town

Located in a building of 220 m2 in Matera, Casa Netural includes a co-working space, a playroom, a kitchen, meeting rooms, relaxing rooms and bedrooms. Casa Netural works as incubator for innovative and experimental projects which are enabled through a variety of economic resources coming from private funds, as well as by the income coming […]

Largo Residências – urban regeneration through local jobs

Largo Residências is a hostel, hotel, artist-in-residence and café in Lisbon’s fast-changing Intendente neighbourhood. Largo, run by a cooperative, aims at connecting the area’s past and future: it serves as a community hub for many of the area’s residents and initiatives, and develops projects to support the cultural and social inclusion of the neighbourhood’s precarious […]

ExRotaprint – Community ownership against speculation

“If you have space, you should do something directly for the people who make up the area.” ExRotaprint was founded in 2007 by tenants of the Rotaprint industrial complex in Wedding, a traditional working class district in Northwest Berlin. When the complex was put up for sale by the Berlin Municipality’s Real Estate Fund, members […]

De Besturing – From tenancy to collective ownership

De Besturing was founded in 2006 in an industrial area of The Hague and over the years it has been transformed from a temporary studio complex into a sustainable collective of artists and designers. Initially rented out for free on a temporary basis from the municipality, the community nevertheless collected the rent from tenants, constituting […]

Müszi – Public functions in private spaces

MÜSZI Art & Community Centre was a cultural space operating on the 3rd floor of a socialist-style department store in Budapest. Müszi stands as an unprecedented venture in Budapest, a venue that positions itself as an independent, self-sustaining “house of culture,” and offers affordable space and activities to a wide range of age groups, while combining its artistic and social mission with business principles in a sustainable manner.

LaFabrika detodalavida – Revitalising a rural area

LaFabrika detodalavida is a multifunctional community centre in Los Santos de Maimona in Extremadura (ES), that offers a series of local services to its rural community, such as cultural events, music, construction spaces and most importantly gathering venues. For renovating a derelict industrial site, the crowdfunding campaign of LaFabrika detodalavida on the Goteo platform reached […]

Magdas Hotel – Refugees with tourism jobs in Vienna

Magdas Hotel is a social business hotel based on cooperation, existing resources and a social vision. Refugees, volunteers and professionals of the hotel business transform a former rest home, situated at the Wiener Prater, to a grand budget hotel. The idea of the hotel deals with the topic of integration and enables the chance for […]

Largo Residências – Urban regeneration through local jobs

Largo Residências is a hostel, hotel, artist-in-residence and café in Lisbon’s fast-changing Intendente neighbourhood. It serves as a community hub for many of the area’s residents and initiatives, and develops projects to support the cultural and social inclusion of the neighbourhood’s precarious inhabitants. The establishment of Largo was assisted by the Lisbon Municipality’s BIP/ZIP program in 2011.

Funding the Cooperative City: Community Finance and the Economy of Civic Spaces

Funding the Cooperative City: Community Finance and the Economy of Civic Spaces Edited by Daniela Patti & Levente Polyák (Eutropian Research & Action) Publisher: Cooperative City Books, Vienna, 2017 Format: Paper size B5, 244 pages Publication date: September 2017 ISBN 978-3-9504409-0-4 The book is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) More […]

Afrikaanderwijk – Pooling neighbourhood resources

Afrikaanderwijk Cooperative in South Rotterdam’s Feijenoord area works on bringing together existing workspaces, entrepreneurs, producers, social organisations and the market. The Cooperative began its work by mapping the unrecognised competences of residents in the Afrikaanderwijk neighbourhood. Based on these skills, the Cooperative created a number of organisations to help residents use their skills.

Goteo – Crowdsourcing community resources

Goteo is a platform for civil crowdfunding founded by Platoniq, a Catalan association of culture producers and software developers. Goteo helps citizen initiatives and social, cultural, technological projects that produce open source results and community benefits, in crowdfunding and crowdsourcing resources. Goteo’s crowdfunding campaigns have mobilised more than 90,000 people, collecting over 4,5 million euros. Goteo also helps initiatives gather non-monetary contributions and establish partnerships that can advance their work.

BIP/ZIP – Promoting partnerships in sensitive urban areas

BIP/ZIP is a pioneering strategy by the Lisbon Municipality’s Body of Housing and Local Development, promoting partnerships in the city’s priority neighbourhoods. Besides establishing local governance structures that facilitate communication and shared decision-making between the public administration and neighbourhood organisations, BIP/ZIP also includes an ignition funding programme for community partnership initiatives with a strong local […]

Community Capital in Action: New Financial Models for Resilient Cities

In the past decade, with the economic crisis and the transformation of welfare societies, NGOs, community organisations and civic developers – City Makers – established some of the most important services and spaces in formerly vacant buildings, underused areas and neglected neighbourhoods. Consolidating their presence in the regenerated spaces, these initiatives are increasingly looking into […]

Cascina Roccafranca – The Public-Civic Governance of Space

Cascina Roccafranca is a multi-functional community centre operating in a building owned by the City of Turin. Partly financed by the municipal budget, the centre is managed through a cooperation between public and civic actors: a scheme that offers a valuable governance model while providing a wide range of social and cultural activities.