The birth of the Community for the Public Park of Centocelle: the importance of local communities in preserving cultural heritage.

The birth of the Community for the Public Park of Centocelle: the importance of local communities in preserving cultural heritage.

Over the past three years, LabGov has been working on the city of Rome on the conditions that favors and hampers the development of a smart co-district in a metropolitan city. This hypothesis was pursued with a complex research strategy that started in 2015, is still ongoing and consisted in an application through adaptation of the Co-City protocol in the City of Rome. Info and materials are available here: The first step was that of identifying a zone of urban experimentalism. The result of the first year of applied work resulted in the identification of an area, the Co-district “Roma Sud Est” composed of areas belonging to the V and VI Districts of the City of Rome, in particular the following neighborhoods: Alessandrino, Centocelle and Torre Spaccata. The Co-district “Roma Sud Est” represents a complex urban area because it is characterized by low indicators of social and economic fragility within the City of Rome. The VI District and in particular the urban area of Torre Spaccata presents the lowest level of Human Development Index, highest rates of poverty and of inequalities of the city. According to data on social and economic vulnerability of Rome’s neighborhoods these areas are inhabited mainly by elderly persons (more than 28% of the residents in Torre Spaccata); the Municipalities V and VI are the poorest in the city: the average income is 18.940 in the V, 17,069 in the VI; they have the lowest level of education: the average is 10.3 and 9.7 years respectively. The Human Development Index in the VI is the lowest in the city (0.455), slightly higher in the V (0.571). [1]After a long work of mapping and knowledge of the area through the organization of several cheap talks and site visits, LabGov started to collaborate with the local community and together they experimented new forms of collaborative urban governance.

The 1st December 2017 is an important date for this community, which is working for the preservation of the Archaeological Public Park of Centocelle and for the entire district. It is, in fact, the day in which the “Community for the Public Park of Centocelle” (hereinafter: CPPC) was institutionalized as an NGO[2]. Before the constitution, a co-design session and several cheap talks on field have been organized by LabGovers, putting local communities and their needs at the center. A large number of inhabitants has participated at this process: together with innovation experts and service designers, they have analyzed the territory and their needs, but also how they could contribute to the regeneration of their neighborhoods. At the end of these labs, a group of citizens decided to self-organise and to set up an association for the purpose of preserving and regenerating the Public Park of Centocelle resource and its heritage, which was in a state of complete abandonment and deterioration.

Figure 1 Co-design Lab in Casa della Cultura Villa De Sanctis, 22nd september 2016. Source:

The CPPC is therefore the result of an intense work with the local community, based on the valorization and empowerment of its social capital.

According to the Statute of the CPPC, the work of the members will be based on the principles of civic collaboration and social responsibility towards the cultural heritage of the City of Rome. The CPPC is aimed, indeed at promoting and exploiting the historic, cultural and environmental heritage of the Archaeological Park of Centocelle, which is a complex resource: a cultural and environmental urban commons. It is for that reason that the CPPC has decided to initiate the procedures related to the recognition as Faro Community, taking inspiration by the principles of the Faro Convention signed at Lisbon on October 2015. As reported by the Council of Europe, a Faro Community “is a heritage community consisting of people who value specific aspects of cultural heritage which they wish, within the framework of public action, to sustain and transmit to future generations”. Hence, in order to transfer good practices also at the European level, the Association, among the different goals and activities set, is committed to organize regeneration activities in the Park, to promote walks and cultural activities such as workshop, meetings, aimed at involving the local community, increasing the participation and promoting a sustainable tourism and the creation of new cultural, social, polycentric and collaborative economies. For instance, the Community for the Public Park of Centocelle, in collaboration with others local NGOs like the Neighborhood Committee “Comitato di Quartiere di Torre Spaccata” and the NGO of bikers “Settimo Biciclettari” have organized several workshops about the archaeological and historic heritage of the area. The labs have taken place in several key places of the district and have been organized by important experts who have told the community the history of those places. Experimenting the culture as an entry point has been the main goal of these laboratories.

Moreover, CPPC is the community organizer of the “Civic Collaboration Day”, an all-day long itinerant journey throughout the co-district, during which several activities are organized: from walks to activities of community gardening, labs, kids’ games and concerts in order to cultivate the community and to live the neighborhoods in a different way. The third edition of the Civic Collaboration Day was held on May 5th 2018 in the so-called Co-District. During the day the CPPC, together with LabGov, LUISS University, ENEA and the Vth District of the City of Rome, have organized a heritage walk to promote a new way to live and discover the territory, thanks to the work done by the local community and new narratives of those places and who lives there, telling their histories, projects and experiences. Hundreds of persons have participated, walking or riding bikes, discovering the key places and taking part in several and different activities. The most exciting aspect of this day has been the wide participation and collaboration of local citizens in organizing the walk. Starting from the Park of Acquedotti in the neighborhood of Don Bosco, passing through Torre Spaccata, Centocelle and Tor Sapienza, the walk ended at FusoLab, in the Alessandrino neighborhood, which is a community hub that provides local services, organize cultural events and which works as a catalyst for the entire area and local community.

Figura 3 Heritage Walk during the Civic Collaboration Day, 5th May 2018. Source Facebook

In conclusion, it has been not only a walk, but the result of years of hard work of research and action carried out by experts, researchers and citizens to preserve and valorize the important heritage, of which they are the guardians.



[2]According to the reform of the so-called “third sector”, the law that regulates the social and not for profit sector approved in Italy on July 3rd 2017, “D.Lgs 3rd July 2017, n.117”

Experimenting Civic Collaboration between commons in the South East of Rome

Experimenting Civic Collaboration between commons in the South East of Rome

On Saturday, May 5th, the South East Co-District of Rome has been crossed by Civic Collaboration, urban redevelopment and co-governance of urban commons paths in a whole day full of activities, meetings, debates that has been organized by LabGov in the context of the Co-Rome, in collaboration with V Municipio, ENEA, LUISS University, Comunità Parco Pubblico di Centocelle and several organizations and associations from the district

An itinerant community made of students, academics, stakeholders and active citizens started its path from Parco degli Acquedotti, in Don Bosco neighborhood, to reach Torre Spaccata where, in the green area next to Biblioteca Rugantino, the labgovers and students from the master degree in Landscape Architecture of La Sapienza University inaugurated the third satellite of LUISS’ community garden #OrtoLUISS.

An horticulture lab, the valorization of urban vertical gardens an of “in-the-box” gardens and thoughts on the importance of concrete experimentations of circular economy enriched a morning where people of every age shared a new contact with public and natural spaces of the district

In this direction, the third step of the day was in the permaculture project oh Municipio V “Il sogno trasformato”, that consented to the participants to visit Parco Giorgio de Chirico, in Tor Sapienza neighborhood, and to discuss on how public institutions and communities can try together to look for solutions for environmental redevelopment and social re-activation of those territories where urban inequalities are much stronger.

The rain didn’t stop the seek for experimentation and collaboration, and the participants continued their path in the library “L’ora di libertà”, where they first admired the exhibition “100 piccoli volti di Centocelle” by Giorgia Capatano, and where they then sat down to discuss together the future of Centocelle district

Representatives of ENEA’s #fuTure and Centoc’è labs presented their new ideas to design and manage together the territory while ensuring environmental and social sustainability.

At the end of the day, at FusoLab 2.0, the last emotional step of the day with Valentina Correani sharing with Silvio Bruno (President of Centocelle Neighborhood’s Committee) and Vinceno Luciano (Director of Abitarearoma) stories and poems on the history and the beauties of urban suburbs, starting from the South East of Rome. During the evening the short film by Myrice Tansini “La Prima Volta“, starring Mario Caldaro (beloved honorary member of the Comunità Parco Pubblico di Centocelle) was shown to the move public.

And then: party and music! The musical event #RomaSudfEst was opened by the young Coro Cantering, who sang several folk songs from Italy and Europe (and Rome, of course), and continued with a space all dedicated to #Orto17 with three young roman songwriters, Emilio Stella, Gianmarco Dottori and Andrea D’Apolito, that shared an hymn to the Rome that we hope to be able to build together.

5th May 2018 | Third Civic Collaboration Day and RomaSUDfEST

5th May 2018 | Third Civic Collaboration Day and RomaSUDfEST

The Heritage Walk through the neighbourhoods in the South-East suburbs of Rome during a one day event to enjoy the city experiencing civic collaboration practices 

The EDU@LabGov academic year 2017-2018 – the LUISS Educational Lab is the urban clinic for students to experiment on the field the urban commons theories and collaboration practices – is coming to an end and, for the third year, the labgovers will be committed to a one day experience of civic collaboration and cultural and environmental heritage regeneration of urban commons in the South-East of the city of Rome.

On Saturday, 5th May 2018, the Third Civic Collaboration Day and the RomaSudfEst will represent a unique opportunity to meet, discuss and spread a message of environmental, economic and social sustainability.

A programme full of activities – open to participants of all ages – will engage a variety of local actors and urban stakeholders in living different places and public spaces of the entire district, experiencing new practices of civic collaboration, and pushing forward the local public debate.

The Civic Collaboration Day will start at 9 a.m. in the Degli Acquedotti Park (Don Bosco neighbourhood) and from there will cross through the neighbourhoods of Torre Spaccata, Tor Sapienza, Centocelle and Alessandrino; in each of them are scheduled different activities and events organized by associations and active citizens in collaboration with public and knowledge institutions, as Municipio V, Rome Municipality, ENEA and LUISS University.

The initiative is one of the outputs of the work carried on by EDU@LabGov in different urban experimentation sites in the framework of Co-Roma, a project aimed at building an integrated model of urban smart district based on the development of new co-economies: economies with a circular, social, supportive and collaborative nature and on an active and cohesive citizenship.

Amongst the many activities scheduled during the day:

>> At 10.30 a.m., in the green area next to the Rugantino Library (Torre Spaccata), the labgovers – together with the students of the Master in Landscape Architecture of La Sapienza University of Rome – will bring the University outside its doors by setting up the third satellite of the University’s community garden #ortoLUISS and leading a horticulture lab for children.

>> At 3 p.m. in the Centocelle Park – which, for the first two years, has been the centre of the Co-Roma project – will take place different activities for kids about urban mobility, together with a series of heritage walks (organized by the Comunità Parco Pubblico di Centocelle Odv), as defined by the Faro Convention framework, to discover together and showcase to all the participants the beauty of several archaeological and cultural resources of the district.

>> The Collaboration Day will close at FusoLab (Centocelle) at 19.30 with the RomaSudfEst where many people from the district and from the whole city will gather to celebrate with the music the conclusion of this important collective moment.

Click here to download the full programme of the event


5 Maggio 2018 | 3° Giornata della Collaborazione Civica e il RomaSudFest

5 Maggio 2018 | 3° Giornata della Collaborazione Civica e il RomaSudFest

Una passeggiata patrimoniale nella periferia sud-est di Roma a praticar la collaborazione civica e tanto divertimento


Il percorso del Laboratorio EDU@LabGov di quest’anno sta per volgere al termine e non può che concludersi in bellezza, dedicando – come da tre anni a questa parte – un’intera giornata alla collaborazione civica e alla rigenerazione del patrimonio culturale, ambientale e dei beni comuni urbani dei quartieri di Roma Sud-Est.

Sabato 5 maggio 2018 avrà luogo la Terza Giornata della Collaborazione Civica e il RomaSudfEst, un’occasione per incontrarsi, discutere e diffondere un messaggio di sostenibilità declinata in tutte le sue dimensioni: ambientale, economica e sociale.

Tante – e adatte a tutte le età – le attività in programma che permetteranno ad una molteplicità di attori di attraversare vari luoghi e spazi pubblici dell’intero distretto, seminare nuove esperienze e pratiche di collaborazione civica e contaminare positivamente il dibattito pubblico sul territorio.

La giornata avrà inizio la mattina alle ore 9:00 dal Parco degli Acquedotti, nel quartiere di Don Bosco per poi raggiungere i quartieri di Torre Spaccata, Tor Sapienza, Centocelle ed Alessandrino, in ciascuno dei quali sono previste attività ed eventi organizzati dalle associazioni e dai cittadini attivi dei vari quartieri, in collaborazione con le istituzioni pubbliche e cognitive, come il Municipio V, il Comune di Roma, ENEA e l’Università LUISS Guido Carli.

L’iniziativa è frutto del lavoro che il Laboratorio EDU@LabGov sta portando avanti su più cantieri di sperimentazione urbana nel contesto del Progetto Co-Roma, per costruire un modello integrato di smart district urbano, basato sullo sviluppo di nuove co-economie, ovvero economie di natura circolare, sociale, solidale e collaborativa e su una cittadinanza attiva e coesa.

Tra le varie attività proposte:

>> alle 10.30 presso l’area verde attigua alla biblioteca Rugantino, nel quartiere di Torre Spaccata, i ragazzi del Laboratorio, in collaborazione con gli studenti del corso di Laurea Magistrale in Architettura del Paesaggio de La Sapienza, anche quest’anno porteranno fuori dall’Università quello che è ormai il terzo satellite dell’#ortoLuiss, organizzando un laboratorio di ortocultura a cui sono invitati tutti coloro che sono desiderosi di sporcarsi le mani e divertirsi, inclusi giochi e attività per bambini

>> alle 15.00 nel Parco di Centocelle, oggetto dei primi anni di sperimentazione del progetto Co-Roma, si svolgeranno attività per bambini sul tema della mobilità sostenibile, e i membri della Comunità Parco Pubblico di Centocelle condurranno i presenti in una serie di “passeggiate patrimoniali” (heritage walks, come definite dal Faro Convention Framework), alla scoperta del patrimonio culturale e archeologico del distretto.

>> La giornata si concluderà presso FusoLab, nel quartiere di Centocelle, con il RomaSudfEst, dove ci aspetteranno tanta musica e bella gente per festeggiare insieme la conclusione di questo momento collettivo che speriamo in un futuro non sia soltanto più un evento, ma un giorno come tanti in cui valori quali la collaborazione civica e la cura di un bene comune entrano a far parte della nostra quotidianità e guidano le nostre azioni.

Non mancate, portate tanta allegria e non ve ne pentirete!

Scarica qui il programma dettagliato





On Thursday, February 22nd, and Friday 23rd, the Sapienza University of Rome is going to host “Smart Park a Centocelle“: two days of workshop all dedicated to the Centocelle Archeological Park, an area that is currently hosting an experimental project of urban regeneration from a “Smart” perspective, conducted by ENEA in collaboration with LUISS LabGov.

The workshop is organized in the context of the Lab of Environmental Desing from the degree course in Landscape Architecture, coordinated by Prof. Arch. Alessandra Battisti in collaboration with Ing. Mauro Annunziato from ENEA, and will be structured as following:

Thursday, February 22nd

  • h 9.00: Institutional Welcome – Prof. Laura Ricci
  • Introduction
    • Prof. Alessandra Battisti (La Sapienza)
    • Ing. Mauro Annunziato (ENEA)
  • h 10.00: ENEA’s projects: Smart Cities & Smart Communities – Arch. Claudia Meloni (ENEA)
  • h 10.30: Enabling Technologies for Smart Cities – Arch. Sabrina Romano (ENEA)
  • h 11.00: Analysis of the urban climate and mitigation scenarios in Piazza dei Mirti – Michele Zinzi (ENEA)
  • h 11.30: Co-Cities methodology for urban co-governance – Chiara Prevete and Chiara De Angelis (LabGov)
  • h 14.00: workshop

Friday, February 23rd

  • h 9.00: workshop
  • h 14.30: presentation of the results
  • h 16.30: open discussion on the results with LabGov’s co-founder Prof. Christian Iaione and community members
  • Conclusions

The full program can be found here: