Digital actions for the upskilling of grassroot communities

Digital actions for the upskilling of grassroot communities

Photo: Four people smiling

Digital actions for the upskilling of grassroot communities focuses on bottom-up innovation, driven by the communities themselves. Such initiatives see HEI staff and students join communities with expertise to achieve their goals, technical support and advice, and also community expansion. In the majority of cases these are communities’ groups comprising or representing people experiencing fewer opportunities. Specifically, O3 aims to: – offer an opportunity to various communities, including people with fewer opportunities, to voice their environmental, social or other concerns; – Engage HEIs more in a supportive role for various citizen groups in EU countries, including vulnerable citizen groups (such as NEETs (NOT in Education, Employment or Training), migrants, refugees, marginalized communities, seniors, unemployed women etc.) to build technical skills and capacities as a response to the pandemic; – encourage co-creation activities between grassroots communities and HE staff and students willing to tackle communities’ challenges and help communities find a solid, scientifically based reply to their needs, and – report on results of the process in terms of HE change fueled by HE involvement in communities’ needs for a better future.




Title: The European Network of Living Labs (ENoLL)
Type: Digital network
Institution: EU
Year: ongoing
Description: The European Network of Living Labs (ENoLL) is the international, non-profit, independent association of benchmarked Living Labs. Living Labs are real-life test and experimentation environments that foster co-creation and open innovation among the main actors of the Quadruple Helix Model, namely:

  • Citizens
  • Government
  • Industry
  • Academia

ENoLL facilitates knowledge exchange, joint actions and project partnerships between its historically labeled +480 members in Europe and worldwide. Its aim is to promote the Living Labs concept in order to influence EU policies, enhance Living Labs and enable their implementation at a global level.

Title: World Cultures United
Link: Worlds cultures united
Type: NGO
Institution: NGO WCU Oslo
Year: ongoing
Result : hands on workshops, philanthropy
Description: A network of networks, collecting and using resources and possibilities to help local communities to maintain their legacy, preserve their natural resources and grow with health and hope for a better present, all together. We are willing to continue exploring more communities worldwide in order to continue documenting, offering our resources to others and creating new art and cultural bridges.

Title: TOXIC BIOS on Climate conamination
Type: a Public Environmental Humanities project based
Institution: KTH Environmental Humanities Laboratory in Stockholm and funded the by Seed Box, a Mistra-Formas Environmental Humanities Collaboratory.
Year: ongoing
Result: hands on workshops, media maps, digital narratives

Description: A well-recognized genre in the US environmental writing, however almost absent as literary genre in Europe, toxic autobiography is a distinct product of marginalized groups denouncing the environmental injustice in which they feel trapped. Toxic autobiographies are a prototype of counter-history, challenging mainstream narratives on progress, common good, and science. They represent a unique blend of narrative and history, of science and politics, of personal and collective.

The project aims at co-producing with affected individuals and communities stories of contamination and resistance. To date Toxic Bios has gathered about 70 stories which are progressively going to be published in this website. The stories are currently coming from Italy, Portugal, Greece, Turkey, and Sweden, with a few more from other countries. We count to continue developing our narrative archive.

This online platform gathers the Toxic Autobiographies generated by users through a geo-referenced interface. In order to practice the plurality of knowledge production and reproduction, the platform allows the possibility to submit Toxic Autobiographies in various formats, including videos, texts, images, audio files, etc. We have called the methodology engineered throughout Toxic Bios “guerrilla narrative”, meaning with this expression a strategy aiming at occupying mainstream narratives with the counter-hegemonic storytelling of the embodied experiences of toxicity and wasting. Guerrilla narrative, as we see it and practice it, implies the exercise of storytelling as a deliberate counter-hegemonic strategy, with an explicit political aim.

The project will not have an ending date, on the contrary we hope it will spread, catching the attention and interest of those who believe stories are powerful tools for resistance. If you want to be part of Toxic Bios, check out the materials section of the website and watch the video call for action or read the short manual on how to tell your story!

Title: Resist as Forest
Type: a Public Environmental Humanities project on sustainability in collaboration with arts.
Institution: NTNU ARTEC
Year: 2019
Result: hands on workshops, media maps, digital narratives

Description: Becoming Undisciplined / Place by Co-Design: Industry, Postcolony, and Environmental Storytelling / Hanna Musiol and Pablo DeSoto
a public environmental storytelling action, emerged from this effort, envisioned by Pablo as part of his NTNU ARTEC artistic residency in Trondheim, tied to Adressaparken,8 an interactive urban park awarded the SXSW Place by Design.9 Co-curated by Hanna, it was also our attempt at disobedient and collective environmental storytelling and the “(un)disciplined” reclamation of the infrastructures of the humanities in public spaces.10 The ethos and form of the intervention are indebted to the work an award-winning Brazilian investigative journalist, Eliane Brum.11 However, Resist as Forest, an experiment in techno “commoning,” was ultimately a communal performance, carried out in Adressaparken, a space co-owned and co-managed by NTNU, the Trondheim Municipality, and Adressa (one of the oldest newspapers in Norway), but, also, a public space that is ours.

On September 27, 2019, Resist as Forest was staged in the center of Trondheim, our “Silicone Fjord” port city in Norway, in a South Sámi region in the throes of green colonialism conflict during the Global Climate Strike.


 Blue square with yellow stars. Text: Co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union

This project has been funded with the support of the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union. The European Commission’s support for the production of this website does not constitute an endorsement of the contents, which reflect the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

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