Online Workshop: A Planet of Citizen Laboratories. Citizen Innovation in Urban and Rural Areas

Laboratorios ciudadanos distribuidos

ONLINE WORKSHOP JUNE 14, 16, 21 AND 23 16:00-17:30 (CEST).

Organized by Madri+d Foundation for Knowledge.

More information and registration here

During the pandemic, both proximity and remote ways of cooperation have been activated. In moments of confinement and social distancing, many people coordinated in mutual support networks to face the problems derived from Covid19. In the first wave of the pandemic, some institutions organized hackathons that enabled the creation of projects that aimed to face the situation, but after the first few months these hackathons stopped being organized. What if we created stable infrastructures for experimentation and collaboration that promote citizen innovation at the local level and international cooperation simultaneously?

Citizen laboratories are places that facilitate collaboration between people to experiment, design and implement projects that improve life together. In the last 15 years, citizen laboratories have proven to be highly useful facilities for the development of cultural, social and innovation policies: improving life in cities and rural areas, social cohesion and the creation of innovative projects.

This workshop is an invitation to any organization interested in launching a citizen laboratory to alleviate the effects of the pandemic, and design a network that simultaneously facilitates local citizen innovation and international cooperation. During four  online sessions of an hour and a half each on June 14, 16, 21 and 23, a methodology developed by Medialab Prado in the last fifteen years will be shared so citizen laboratory experiences can be carried out during next fall. As part of the workshop, it is proposed to start designing an international network that allows remote collaboration between the different citizen laboratories that are set up.

This initiative is promoted by the Madri+d Foundation for Knowledge, where a regional network of citizen laboratories is being launched in the Madrid Region. The project is related to the program "Distributed Citizen Laboratories. Citizen Innovation in Libraries and other Institutions" promoted by Medialab Prado and the Ministry of Culture.

This activity aims to bring together a group of between 10-15 organizations interested in implementing citizen laboratories or that are already doing so. The objective of this meeting is to start to design a first prototype of a network made up of different types of institutions. Libraries, universities, schools, research centers, health centers, social centers, parishes and any other interested entity are invited to participate in the workshop.

This proposal aims to be a contribution to the New European Bauhaus initiative and proposes that the New Bauhaus works as a great collaborative network formed by European organizations and from other parts of the world.

The workshop will be given by people with extensive experience in the organization of citizen laboratories and will include the participation of citizen laboratories from other parts of the world: Medialab Prado (Spain), Otelo (Austria), Lab Civico Santiago (Portugal), g0v (Taiwan), New Urban Mechanics (US), Silo (Brasil), LabNL (Mexico), People’s Collaborative Governance Network (US) and The Europe Challenge (EU).

Marcos García
He has worked at Medialab Prado between 2003 and 2021, where he has been responsible together with Laura Fernández for the educational program (2004-2006) and the cultural program (2007-2014); and director (2014-2021). At present he is part of the coordination team of the Network of citizen laboratories of the Community of Madrid and the facilitation team for the creation of citizen laboratories in Latin American libraries promoted by Iberbibliotecas within the program Distributed Citizen Laboratories. Citizen innovation in libraries and other cultural institutions.

The call will be open until June 9. The selected ones will be published on June 10. The selection of the participating entities will be carried out according to criteria of geographic diversity and types of institution. Interest in holding a citizen laboratory activity between September and December 2021 will also be taken into account. Each organization will propose a person to attend the four sessions of the workshop.