Urban Clinic LabGov EDU 2019 – III Community Gardening

Urban Clinic LabGov EDU 2019 – III Community Gardening

Saturday, April 27th 2019, the third community gardening session of the Urban Clinic EDU LabGov has taken place in Luiss community garden #OrtoLuiss. This last appointment was dedicated to completing the construction of the material prototypes designed during this A.A. of the Urban Clinic by the students.

This appointment was dedicated to completing the construction of their material prototype that is an entry point in cities, and it is also equipped with technological elements. This entry point will link to the immaterial protoype, that want to raise awareness on issues such as sustainable agriculture, nutrition, diet, sport, tech justice and many more.

Labgovers split into groups to perfect their prototype and demonstrated great organizational and collaborative skills. But they still have some things to do and for this reason we will meet again on Saturday 4th May in Luiss!

The LabGovers just don’t want to leave us!

Stay Tuned!

The co-created story of Jardim Nakamura neighbourhood

The co-created story of Jardim Nakamura neighbourhood

The co-created story of Jardim Nakamura neighbourhood


Image: Sofia Croso Mazzuco. The welcoming of Jardim Nakamura map showing the local context.

Jardim Nakamura is a peripheric community in the city of São Paulo, in Jardim Ângela neighbourhood, and the lucky place chosen for an urban signalling project that aims to tell the story of the territory in order to bring a new sense of appropriation and belonging to the area. The project called “Passeia, Jardim Nakamura”- which means “stroll, Jardim Nakamura” – was developed by two NGO’s; SampaPé! (1), which promotes the appropriation of the city through the genuine act of walking and occupying public spaces; and COURB (2), which promotes the encounter between organizations that aim to strengthen collaboration for development in the urban environment. 

On a hands-on effort that occurred on December 7 and 8, 2018 in the streets of the community, different people participated on what is called mutirão in Brazil (meaning bottom-up, collective action) to install three types of urban signalling:

– the first one aiming to point directions and walking distance to specific places within the area;

– the second one showing where people are within the big community map;

– and the third one telling the history of specific places (for example where the neighbourhood started or stories about the local culture). (3)

The project clearly made it possible for the neighbourhood to be reinserted in the history and territory of the city of São Paulo in a different manner, since the acknowledgement that there are stories worth being registered invites a different outlook towards Jardim Nakamura. Children who live in the neighbourhood also participated in the installation of the signalling through a treasure hunt game, where the finding of a signalling spot was linked to the painting of that area with a project symbol. Involving children in this activity aimed to help promote appropriation of the place and the awareness of being a citizen and helping build the local history.

The area already received many visitors before the project was completed, for hosting a local community institution which is an example of sustainability and circular economy – namely the institute Favela da Paz (4), which explores different projects linked to local culture, citizenship, music, clean energy production and the well known cooking project Vegearte (5). This institute also partnered and gave support to the “Passeia, Jardim Nakamura” project, for believing in the value it could bring to the territory.


Image: Sofia Croso Mazzuco. Jardim Nakamura seen from above.  

Besides the direct influence of the project in the community, it has also contributed to the discussion of how telling the story of a place through different lenses can help heal and bring new meaning to a territory; something worth considering when understating the power urban design has to influence the life of communities.


Image: Sofia Croso Mazzuco. One of the signalling showing the distance to interest places.

1. https://www.mobilize.org.br/blogs/sampa-pe/

2.  https://www.courb.org/pt/

3. https://medium.com/@sampape/pela-primeira-vez-sinaliza%C3%A7%C3%A3o-para-pedestres-chega-a-bairro-da-periferia-de-s%C3%A3o-paulo-395a40d99bb0

4. https://faveladapaz.wordpress.com/

5. https://projetovegearte.wordpress.com/

Urban Clinic LabGov EDU 2019: second community gardening session

Urban Clinic LabGov EDU 2019: second community gardening session

Save the date: next Saturday, 23rd March we will host the second EDU@LabGov community gardening session in Luiss Community Garden from 10 am to 13am.

The LabGovers will work in order to improve and complete the prototype of the platform that they are building. This session will represent a fundamental moment to practically apply what they have learnt during the first three modules in the classroom. This is not only a didactic moment, it is a collaborative practice that they will see to bud a project on which the LabGovers (students of the Urban Clinic of LabGov) are assiduously working and with passion. If you are interested in following their work, follow our official social networks!

Stay Tuned!

Urban Clinic LabGov EDU 2019 – III workshop and co-working

Urban Clinic LabGov EDU 2019 – III workshop and co-working

Save the date: on 15th and 16th March will take place the third weekend of the EDU@LabGov Urban Clinic in Luiss Guido Carli University!

Friday 15th March from 16pm to 18pm in the Luiss Campus, we will host a lecture of professor Christian Iaione about Urban Law and Policy, and we will hear the testimony of lawyer Nico Maravia from law firm Pavia & Ansaldo and of the dr. Paola Marzi from the Municipality of Rome, who will speak about the Regulation on the urban gardens that she wrote for the Municipality of Rome.

Saturday 16th march from 10am to 17pm, will be held the third session of co-working. It will be divided into two part. First, we will hear Pasquale Tedesco’s experience: he is an expert in environmental sustainability, sustainable and synergic agriculture and in the field of urban and social gardens. In the second part of co-working the EDU LabGov team, thanks to the guide of Chiara De Angelis and Daniela Patti, we will speak about the process of design focusing on the user journey maps. In this way, the LabGovers will analyze all the passages of their project, they will answer to the needs of the ‘personas’ (the users object of their project) and they will define the various sections and the categories of contents of the platform that they are developing.

The next meetings are very important in order to complete and improve the idea that it is taking form more and more.

Stay Tuned!

Costa Rica urban exercises: promotion of the commons, and the right to the city

Costa Rica urban exercises: promotion of the commons, and the right to the city

[…]the concentration of people and events in time and space is a prerequisite to make anything happen, but more importantly are what activities are allowed to develop […]

In Life between buildings[1] are outlined the applications that must exist in the architectural proposals, so that human being begins to appropriate them. By extrapolating this analysis and relying on the concept established in The Right to the City[2], where it is considered that the gentrification caused by urban processes implies an impact on the present and the future of humanity[3]. The construction and strengthening of social structures that complement the dynamics of interaction of the different actors begins to make sense.

This concept of change of social structure is broad and, at the same time, complicated to define by different actors involved in the subject[4] Therefore, related processes that can be articulated from the academy result in the proposal of systematic variables that, far from wanting to intercede to achieve the purpose of a change of structure, what they seek is to detonate a collective process which add to the existing.

Proposal of social integration.

In this search to promote the use of space and social interaction, the approach to the community Barrio Pinto and its surroundings is proposed in the South of the canton of San Pedro de Montes de Oca, in the province of San Jose, Costa Rica; whose radius of action is located between the kilometer close to the Campus of Universidad Latina. This context contains many different realities. On the one hand, the central avenue has an established structure of commerce and services, in addition is the road that connects the center of the country with the Inter-American route, therefore, highly charged with vehicular flow.

This situation disappears entering avenue 2, 4 and 6. Residential use is giving space to the commerce and offices, but that still encloses a residential range that gives life to the parks of his around. This mutation of the space is reflected in the offer of related services between traditional commercial systems, such as tailors, sodas and informal commerce, as well as other emerging elements (biodegradable cleaning products).

Is under these dynamics – between the behavior of the inhabitants of the sector and the users of the services that are beginning to develop in the area – that the interaction between students of the area and the institutions (who are unaware of the processes, routes, services) arises. For example, there is a coffee shop that offers bike rental per hour and per day, as well as the organization of recreational circuits in the sector.

Then, the question arisen is: how to provide a tool to citizenship that allows articulation in the public space between the collective memory of a specific place and emerging uses that change the image of the city?

It is at this point, where the definition of common goods[5] and Collaborative Economy[6] (Cañigueral, 2014), together with the use of the technological tool Agora PIC (Plataforma de Integración Ciudadana, 2017) developed by the NGO team PIC, that these are taken as the basis of the research, to identify the possible elements to be taken into account, and to define a path that provides information on tangible and intangible variables. Trying to unify the social processes of the inhabitants of the sector, with visitors and users of the different activities in the radio, near to the community of Barrio Pinto.

Within the concrete analysis of the peculiarities of the community, the gap that exists between space of the Square Máximo Fernández-  on the north side of Franklin D. Roosevelt School – and El Retiro Park (650 meters Southwest of Máximo Fernández Square) -, as a hub that makes possible the social connection of a situation different from the current, whose goal is immersed, as Gehl points out[7] – is taken into account, to generate not only the space of transition, but of interaction.

Citizen participation has been necessary for the construction of this project. Across workshops and interviews, as well as different visits to the community to establish collaborative and individual services[8], the rescue of collective memory, stories and accounts of the citizen for the visibility of the human and sensory part of the area began, as well as the delimitation of the emerging uses that change the dynamic preset in the area, and generate a social movement toward the appropriation of common space[9].

Conclusion of a job, start of a route.

In conclusion, it is possible to counteract the thinking and analysis of Gehl[10], about the dynamics of use of public spaces, with the contributions of Zaida Muxí and Joseph María Montaner[11] on the substantial changes that surround the phenomenology of the city for the adequate enjoyment and use of the various variables of the Commons. Processes that lead to interpret the change of the image of the city must occur in an intrapersonal way, understanding that this isolated element is part of an articulated social system[12].

On this premise, it is part of this personal relationship, of collective memory and the individual task, for the strengthening of pre-existing social layers. It may not induce a community to take a change in its structure, but it strengthens when an external user can deviate from their daily life to rediscover its immediate context. For this reason, and waiting for the use of the technological tool (Ágora PIC[13]) to boost social skills to community, this intervention has been completed with the start of a journey raised with the student community of the Universidad Latina.

On this basis, we should start from this relationship between the collective memory and the individual task, to strengthen the pre-existing social layers. It is not possible to induce a community to adopt a modification in its structure, but it can be strengthened, when an external user can get away from their everyday life to rediscover their immediate context. For this reason, the use of the Ágora PIC technological tool was envisaged so that it could stimulate the social capacities of community making, ending this intervention with the beginning of a journey through the community.

A circuit that seeks, every four months, that is to say with the opening of the academic semester, to offer the newly admitted student the possibility of knowing their immediate context, and at the same time generate interaction with the dynamics of their area and with its inhabitants. This wants to contribute to the creation of a collective memory and local participatory networks that bring the academy closer to its own territory.


Il progetto pilota del LabGov Costa Rica comincia da esercizi accademici mirati che hanno l’intenzione de rispondere alla domanda: come facilitare uno strumento alla cittadinanza che permetta l’articolazione tra i beni comuni spaziali e la memoria collettiva di un determinato luogo; con una particolare attenzione agli usi emergenti che mutano rapidamente il volto frenetico della capitale e il ricordo di un passato, non troppo passato, campestre e bucolico? Come possiamo conservare la memoria dei beni comuni intangibili promuovendo contemporanemente l’hic et nunc dei commons tangibili attuali?

[1] Gehl, J. (2011). Life between buildings: using public space. Washington, DC: Island Press.

[2] Lefebvre, H. (1973). Le Droit à la ville. Paris: Ed. Anthropos.

[3] Costes, L. (2012). Del ‘derecho a la ciudad’ de Henri Lefebvre a la universalidad. Urban, 1-12.

[4] Lucas, M.A. (2006). Estructura social. La realidad de las sociedades avanzadas. Madrid: Pearson Education.

[5] Fundación Heinrich Böll (2008). Genes, bytes y emisiones: Bienes comunes y ciudadanía. Ciudad de México: Ediciones Böll.

[6] Cañigueral, A. (2014). Vivir mejor con menos. Barcelona: Penguin Random House Grupo Editorial.

[7] Gehl, J. op.cit.

[8] Cañigueral, A. op.cit.

[9] Fundación Heinrich Böll, op.cit.

[10] Gehl, J. op.cit.

[11] Muxí, Z., Montaner, J.M. (2011). Arquitectura y política. Barcelona: Editorial Gustavo Gili.

[12] Lucas, M.A. op. cit.

[13] https://agora.picapp.org