What is it about?

LOCAL SQUARES is a EU funded Partnership of 7 urban development organisations in Europe. Overall Objective of this 2-years project is the training of urban planners that aims at identifying and experiencing participatory approaches in local urban contexts. The Training focuses on strategies and approaches to involve a broader diversity of stakeholders in the management of public spaces.

Participating organisations are…

Interactive Workshop of Europe GbR (DE), a cooperation of urban planners and facilitators working with participatory methods in local and international contexts.
Basurama (ES), is a non-profit association engaged in upcycling waste, community building practices and creative use of public spaces. It is based in Madrid, but works internationally using art as a tool for social participation and social change.
PlanSinn GmbH (AT), an urban planning office in Vienna, running participatory projects in urban and rural settings
Stichting Elos Nederland (NL), designing and facilitating the interactive and participatory approach “Oasis Game” in Amsterdam and other cities.
Catholic University of Louvain (BE), research team on participation in urban planning, composed by urban planners, architects, geographers, sociologists et.al.
Local Intelligence (NL), a small enterprise leading innovative processes in Twello to foster multi-stakeholder governance to develop education, urban spaces and organisations.
INCA Deutschland e.V. (DE), a platform of cultural and artistic activists working in Berlin.

In cooperation with Esta es una plaza (ES), which is an association of neighbors of Lavapies (Madrid) managing a plot of land in the middle of the city with the aim of providing a green space for Madrid people (where green includes gardening, cultural, social and many other activities under the guiding principles of: money-free space, horizontal management, consensus based decisions, etc.). A place to see…

With the project LOCAL SQUARES, we want…

…to improve the quality of work of urban planners. Therefore one aim is to foster the dialogue between different stakeholders (from institutional organizations to unorganised and informal citizens) as we understand them as fundamental key informants (“daily experts”) who complement the professional knowledge of urban planners.
…to exchange and to train on more inclusive, creative, interdisciplinary and participatory urban planning approaches. …to share innovative uses of public urban spaces and to discuss its potentialities.
…to create a network of experts on participatory approaches that work in urban development in Europe.

How did we work?

Exchanging on best practices and reaching local projects (and local actors) affords working within the concrete local setting. The Partnership will therefore involve Partners’ local projects as learning laboratory and, on the other side, make them benefit of the collective expertise of this European network of consultants. Core activity of LOCAL SQUARES will be 7 face-to-face meetings in the 5 members countries. Each meeting has a specific focus according to the background and work experience of the partners. As agreed in Berlin (October 2012), the Learning process should be experienced based, e.g. Walking as a way to explore a city, to share impressions & inspirations and to reflect will be a common principle in the meetings.


Overview of the Partners

UCL analyzed the different Partners about the scales they tackle, the stakeholders they contact, and the roles and attitudes they use to address stakeholders and scales:


Coordination and further information

… please contact Interactive Workshop of Europe GbR: info@workshop-of-europe.eu.