Commons Matter: IASC Conference – Utrecht, July 2017

Official Event Video by Utrecht University to present the 2017 IASC Conference taking place in Utrecht.

The global XVI Biennial Conference, ‘Practicing the commons: Self-governance, cooperation, and institutional change’ of The International Association for the Study of the Commons (IASC) is taking place this week in the historical city centre of Utrecht, from the 10th to the 14th of July, 2017.

The conference represents a very important opportunity for the consolidation of the study of the commons, bringing together scholars, young researchers, public and private actors, and professionals from all over the world, who will learn, exchange ideas, and debate on innovative practices of management and governance of the commons.

Engaged in the achievement of the social and institutional regeneration of the commons, LabGov is doing research on innovative governance models and it will participate in the 2017 IASC Conference in Utrecht. Elena De Nictolis (LUISS University) together with the co-founders of LabGov, Christian Iaione (LUISS University)  and Sheila Foster (Georgetown University) will present the “1st Co-Cities report on Urban (Commons) Transitions”, introducing the work that LabGov has carried on and sharing their experiences acquired on the field through the design of regulatory frameworks like the Bologna Regulation on Civic Collaboration for the Urban Commons. 

Yesterday, Elena de Nictolis chaired the panel on “Governments and the Commons” while Sheila Foster chaired the session on “Urban Resource Management”. Today, Sheila Foster will be chairing the “Cities Building Commons” panels, where Elena de Nictolis will present on the “Experimental public policies for collaboration in urban commons governance: Lessons from Italy”, focusing on the experiences and lessons learnt from LabGov’s projects like the Co-Bologna initiative. Tomorrow, Sheila Foster and Christian Iaione will present on “Studying and practicing the commons in the city: Designing a methodology for a network of collaborative, commons-based cities (“Co-City”)”, as part of the the panel on “The Politics and Governance of New Uses of the Urban Commons”. 

As part of the “Practitioners’ Labs”, particularly of interest are the “LabGov Amsterdam: An expedition in progress”, which will explore the practices of the Laboratory for the Governance of the Commons (LabGov) in Amsterdam, inspired by the work of professor Christian Iaione and LabGov; and the Lab on “Becoming-common. City administrations as practitioners of the commons in Europe”, which presents different practices developed by local governments in the production and management of public resources that are understood as commons.

The work of the IASC and the thematic focus of this conference reflect the urgency and the relevance that commons have in our societies today. Increasing privatization of public goods coupled with the economic downturns of recent years have weakened our societies, creating the necessity to restore the collaborative relationships between citizens, administrations and businesses in order to share resources, and take care of the commons in urban and local communities.

The program of the event is available on IASC’s official website:

Dal 10 al 14 luglio avrà luogo a Utrecht la conferenza organizzata dall’ International Association for the Study of the Commons (IASC) sul tema:  ‘Practicing the commons: Self-governance, cooperation, and institutional change’. LabGov parteciperà alla conferenza presentando il lavoro di ricerca intitolato “The 1st Co-Cities report on Urban (Commons) Transitions”.