Mapping the Italian Urban and Natural Commons

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= "Italy of the Commons – LabGov’s map".

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Giulia Spinaci:

"Mapping the Italian commons is only a recent achievement. The attempt made by Zappata Romana is noteworthy, but limited in space (it covers only the city of Rome) and only green spaces are taken into consideration. Another map is the one provided by UNESCO, which on the one hand has the virtue of listing intangible benefits (local traditions), while on the other it obviously lacks a comprehensive classification of all the on-field experiments of governance, by marking only the artistic and archeological sites. We might enumerate all the mapping attempts in Italy. Still, there is not an exhaustive map of the commons and maybe there will never be, given the great variety of the commons. With the willingness of bridging the gap, LabGov’s latest efforts dealt with this: mapping the Italian urban and natural commons, both the material and the intangible ones, also with an insight of the consolidated governance approaches and of the ongoing experiments on field.

Let us start with the definition of the commons: commons are goods, tangible, intangible and digital, that citizens and the Administration, also through participative and deliberative procedures, recognize to be functional to the individual and collective wellbeing, activating themselves towards them pursuant to article 118, par. 4, of the Italian Constitution, to share the responsibility with the Administration to care or regenerate them in order to improve their public use That being stated, it has been quite easy making a list of the numerous (almost infinite) commons in Italy.

The map distinguishes the various categories with different marks and the classification includes the UNESCO material and intangible sites, the cooperative communities, the consumer cooperatives (water and electricity), but it also offers an updated list of the cities that approved the Bologna Regulation and of the ongoing projects of LabGov. The spatial distribution is homogeneous, even if the consumer cooperatives are concentrated in Northern Italy, for obvious physical characteristics, since they deal with water resources.

Being the project ongoing, the map will never be definitive. Still, it preserves the evocative power typical of images, through the transmission of a message of cooperation in the care and regeneration of the commons." (