Unigrowcity 2011-13

By accident, the itinerary of exchanges over the two years proceeded in an anticlockwise arc starting in Tuscany and progressively up to the arctic circle at Tromsø then down again ending at the southern west of tip of Europe at Lisbon.
Each city presented a particular microcosm of social practices within their greater environments. Each exchange brought invaluable access to a diversity of practices broadly based on the self-making of a sustainable city.
Practices take place within contexts; these contexts are peopled by unique constituencies and social actors. To an extent elements of practice are transferable though the contexts are not.
Everywhere the constraints of each context are visible and different. But what is in common is that social practices are open receptive entities that carry on regardless.
Practices are knowledge banks and knowledge ecosystems that draw their energy from participation. But there is no such thing as participation per se. It is always participation within, within spaces, within community.
There were different approaches, different ways to describe participation. At Stockholm, it was Challenges, Possibilities, Active Citizenship; in Berlin Let it Grow, in Lisbon Dreaming the food system. It would be an imaginative act to give more weight to the role these practices play in the shaping of our cities.


Participating organisations:
Berlin Prinzessinnengarten
Lisbon Gaia
London City Mine(d)
Pari Pari Center of New Learning
Stockholm New Beauty Council 
Tromsø Tromsø Academy of Art


/ Siraj Izhar 2013


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