About the Communities for Future
The Communities for Future Knowledge base is a comprehensive library of community-led action in Europe, informing the social development towards a sustainable, just and safe future. It’s a framework for collaborative production, sharing and implementation of knowledge. Integrating formal and informal modes of inquiry, documentation and evaluation, it is intended to be a tool to support and strengthen ongoing processes of action learning that lie at the heart of community-led action.
The Communities for Future Knowledge base is an attempt to do justice to the huge impact of communities across Europe, exploring how issues are being effectively addressed right now at the local level. Its aim is to provide community-led projects, initiatives and networks, and those interested in them, with a means to access, share and co-create knowledge. In doing so, it offers an evidence base to help improve practices, inform strategic decisions, justify applications for funding and other support, and make a robust case for policy interventions. It also recognises that this work is as much about continuing to ask questions as providing answers, and is intended to be a key tool in this ongoing action inquiry.
The knowledge commons integrates diverse forms of inquiry, from formal research by professional academics through to informal learning through doing in the course of project delivery and community life. It provides a shared platform for collaboration at all stages in the research and action learning cycles: problem definition, background research, project conception and development, data gathering, analysis, interpretation, dissemination, reflection and evaluation. We’re committed to open access and open source ways of working in order to make this knowledge, and knowledge co-creation processes, accessible and user-friendly, Whether you are an established or aspiring community activist, a university student, a professional researcher, local government official, policy-maker, you are invited to make use of this knowledge and contribute to its further development.
The Communities for Future Knowledge base is created by practitioners,, researchers and action researchers passionate about community-led action on sustainability and climate change. It sheds light on the often neglected and dispersed small-scale community solutions to critical local-global issues. It’s main current focus is community-led action in Europe. However, its scope is worldwide, and we welcome collaboration and inclusion of information from elsewhere in the world.
About Communities for Future
All across Europe communities are taking action for a better future. From generating renewable energy to growing food, nurturing local economies to strengthening social connections, communities are responding creatively and courageously to the global challenges of our time. Communities for Future is about inspiring and supporting all communities to take action. Communities for Future helps communities act together, ask fundamental questions, imagine the future, and find appropriate solutions – together.
Collective Action Models for the Energy Transition and Social Innovation
This website is part of a supporting Platform for COMETS project. COMETS project aims at filling the knowledge and participatory gaps around the low carbon energy system transition, to ensure citizens are at the center of the transformation and empower their creative potential. It will advance scientific knowledge on the motives, potential, objectives and barriers of socially innovative Collective Action Initiatives (CAIs) and their role in the energy transition. This will be achieved by quantifying the contribution of CAIs to the energy transition at national and European level. The information gathered by the project will help co-develop and test supportive tools together with CAI members, policy makers and the scientific community.
The Supporting Platform for CAIs is a key component of the COMETS exploitation strategy, the Supporting Platform creates a research-practice interface, spreads social innovations in the energy sector, and connects CAIs to learn from each other. It provides user-friendly open access to verified tools, methods, knowledge, services and communication channels that facilitate CAIs for the energy transition. The main target group are existing and emerging CAIs. Complementary target groups are other actors of the energy innovation ecosystem, including municipalities, regional or national energy agencies, regulatory bodies, European networks, investors/funders and individual experts like researchers or consultants. The Platform will be co-designed iteratively with end users based on a first release shaped and implemented by the project consortium. The actual co-design process will start with the presentation of the Platform at the national workshops and will follow through the subscription of CAIs to the Platform itself. The Platform serves at least three key functions:
1) Networking and mutual learning (through a geographical map of initiatives, instant messaging, peer mentoring);
2) Knowledge co-creation (through sharing case studies and success stories, best and next practices, information on regulatory frameworks, social innovation typologies and templates etc., by means of a wiki and of a resource library); and
3) Information on and access to funding opportunities (crowdfunding).
The co-design process might surface the need for additional functions. The project website will be expanded step by step to also provide the Platform functions.
The project COMETS has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 837722.