Over the last year Commons Network led the peer-to-peer exchange space of the European Municipalist Network (EMN). EMN is an informal network to strengthen the emerging municipalist ecosystem in Europe and its capacity for social and political advocacy. The network includes organisations from all over Europe working from the idea that communities, cities and regions, rather than nation-states, represent the future of Europe.
After a kickoff session in Berlin in the autumn of 2022 we organised a series of online skills-share meetings in the first half of 2023. The skill-sharing sessions aim to reinforce peer-to-peer learning among municipalist actors facilitating exchange and learning on practices, methodologies, experiences and strategies that we need to transform the system. Skill sharing is a way to further promote knowledge held in silos, while developing processes of network organising.
We settled on four major topics: local democratic economy, storytelling, feminist politics and housing. All of the skill share sessions started off with inspiring examples, then opening up a space for participants to exchange their experiences, ask questions and delve deeper. This podcast series is a way to share the skills with even more people and kicks off with a brief introduction.
Background: Commons Network is a coordinating partner of the European Municipalist Network alongside Commonspolis, Transnational Institute and Research for Action. This year the EMN focused on the themes of ‘Cultures and Practices of Care’ and ‘Ecological transition’. We also looked back at the EMN Summer School of 2021, resources still available here
From 2019-2021 Commons Network was a core member of the 99 of Amsterdam which organized the ‘Cities for Change’ Conference in 2020. The four month during conference which changed to an online platform due to the pandemic brought together many social movements from Amsterdam and across Europe to discuss municipalist politics. During this period, Amsterdam became part of the European municipalist network of ‘Fearless cities’. Commons Network helped to set up a public-civic think tank to bring municipalism to Amsterdam, did research into the community and caring economy in Amsterdam and worked with many different actors in the city.
Duration: April 2021 – June 2023
Project lead: Sophie Bloemen
Podcast produced and edited by Constanza Gajardo Leon