Generative Urban Commons in Athens

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Cases

GeCo Living Lab:


Communitism - Athens, Greece

"Communitism is a self-funded sociο-cultural project, organized in Athens in 2015. It aims at mobilizing social structures into reactivating abandoned buildings of cultural heritage. It is structured in three consecutive events that are designed to involve three broader communities: creative audience, local artists and international artists. To achieve this, they have formed a dynamic community consisting of people of different personalities, nationalities, ages, educational levels and orientations. At this time, they have been granted the use of a building in downtown Athens, which acts as a field of action for their purposes. As they connect, form synergies and learn how to work collectively, they have created the conditions for the building to become a common good: a vibrant center where the involved parties can communicate their social and artistic actions. Their experiment succeeded and, in the spring of 2018, they set up a strategy for founding a self-organized socio-cultural center. At a broader level, they are envisioning the creation of a new model for the activation of abandoned spaces that other communities can use, thus contributing to a new approach of the commons." (https://generative-commons.eu/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/policy-brief_last-version-post-round-table.pdf)


Melissa - Athens, Greece

"Another example is Melissa, a network for migrant women in Athens, promoting empowerment, communication and active citizenship. It aims at promoting, creating and sustaining bonds, and at building a bridge of communication with the host society. Melissa was founded in September 2014 with the direct involvement of migrant women leaders, it has members from 45 countries who live and work in Greece. It operates on the basis of a common platform, a hub where networks and individuals can meet, share their concerns and ideas, and support each other in the pursuit of their common goals. It provides a platform for networking, capacity building and advocacy and runs an innovative integration program supporting refugee women and children. Melissa’s vision of society is not as a collection of isolated cells, but as a beehive of creativity, communication and exchange. Their aim is to motivate migrant and refugee women and engage them in the public sphere, in order to be the change, they wish to see. Despite the adversities that they have faced and continue to face in the current crisis, migrant and refugee women are multipliers and integrators. They are capable of making something out of almost nothing, multiplying their scarce resources in order to feed, nurture and care. What they create with their work, their dedication, their talents, their efforts and ambitions, promotes social cohesion and contributes to the host society in countless visible and invisible ways." (https://generative-commons.eu/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/policy-brief_last-version-post-round-table.pdf)