In the previous blog we had a look at COS3i and the School of Talents and Wellness. None of the initiatives were easy to build up as they require the application of a new mindset. Gradually more and more people and institutions arrive at the awareness that cocreation is also in their self interest. In my home town Eindhoven multidisciplinary cocreation was applied already in the 70’s to overcome the crisis of mayor industries going bankrupt or moving to low wage countries. The labor gap was big and unemployment needed to be addressed creativy. Triple helix interaction between business, government and education received the name of Brainport. It develop still in the money driven paradigm but could be seen as mayor step forward.
Sustainocracy in 2009 introduced two modications. The first was the participation society, or quadruple helix. It was initiated at human/citizen level, not institutional, positioning institutions as instruments for human resilience, not abuse. And secondly it was not money driven but focused on cocreation of our core natural human values locally. “The world upside down” an official reacted to the invitation. “The world put back to how it should be” was the sustainocratic reaction.
AiREAS, regional health and air quality
AIREAS is the very first multidisciplinary cocreation of a healthy environment. Even though the cocreation is still very much focused on measurement infrastructures (making visible the invisible) and citizen’s lifestyle, it is a start. Issues like regional development, energy, building routines, etc are not part yet of the cocreation despite the impact on the environment and people. Cities were never designed from an health perspective. Introducing this already over a decade now, has changed the public discourse, institutional positioning and decision making. It will not be long until the core values driven cocreation reality becomes meanstream.
The expertise in AiREAS is huge. For instance the use of measurement equipment of different suppliers. The relationship with health and behavior, policy making, stimulus to innovative entrepreneurship, etc. This is all published in open access papers and available for use in other cities around the world.
FRE2SH, regional food cocreation
When we realize that a city population is structurally dependent for food on big food chains and streams from outside the city, we can easily sense the vulnerability that this contains. Especially when we see that food production has developed over time as an industrialized process that misuses our planetary balance and resources. At the same time we all got disconnected from our natural origins to consume blindly the modified, processed food that we find in the mega supermarkets. The whole process is damaging in all aspects of sustainable life resilience. The only way forward is to re-engage with food and understand its important values for us in close balance with nature. But a city has hardly any space for productivity and the return of nature in our close vecinity. It requires a restructuring of our city design as well as our engagement in city food productivity.
Through the FRE2SH (Food, Recreation, Energy, Education, Safety and Health) community we started to experiment with all this. We also wanted to gradually give relief the rural areas in such a way that nature could recover itself after hundreds of years of structural landscape manipulation, destruction and use of chemicals. This is ofcourse extremely complex since many farmers were stimulated to grow out of cost efficiency, invest in technology or the growing regulations of government. At the same time they were squeezed by the massive centralized purchasing groups that place the profit of the chain in the city in a speculative manner. With huge debts, on te verge of collapse or bancrupcy the farmers are not easily convinced to turn their back onto their old business model. The city population is very used to the supermarkets and had little intention to join the food movement, except certain early adaptors. City government was not prepared to provide indoor or outdoor space destined for car parks, trade or housing.
We built up expertise in the following areas of interest:
- Circular, zero waste food systems
- Food processing into catering meals
- Green roofs
- Vertical farming
- Closed circuit water management
- City logistics (walking, by bike)
- Neighborhood farming
- Multilevel process development (food, employment, education, etc)
Here we share a video in Dutch but an illustration for indoor farming. Further below you find some pictures of outdoor and processing processes.