Compendium for the Civic Economy: Turning innovations into 25 practices

Architecture 00:/

Year: 2014

“The idea at the heart of the Big Society is a very simple one: that real change can’t come from government alone. We’re only going to make life better for everyone in this country if everyone plays their part – if change in our economy and our society is driven from the bottom up.”

Compendium for the Civic Economy by the London-based research and design bureau Architecture 00:/ presents 25 cases on how we can envision the future, create a new form of economy, and organise society in the UK and elsewhere.

In the context of a global financial crisis as well as complex social issues and environmental change, a growing and diverse number of change-makers are already working towards a different economy. Through organisation, connection with people and use of the best approach to collaborative investment, an alternative economic platform is on the horizon. Compendium for the Civic Economy contains 25 case studies showing how the civic economy – combining the spirit of entrepreneurship with the aspiration of civic renewal – actively contributes to community resilience, everyday innovation and shared prosperity. From local food growing projects to sustainable supermarkets, community waste-to-energy plants to cooperative telecoms services, these initiatives are having a tangible impact on the social and economic realities in cities, villages and towns.

The book advocates that people should not wait for the government to solve the crisis, but instead play an active role in facilitating the ventures presented here. It is truly an inspirational read for entrepreneurs, activists, policy makers and anyone who is concerned with community empowerment and ways to withstand the consequences of deep socio-economic and environmental crisis. Flipping through the pages, you can find what the fertile conditions are for this new economy to thrive and how to turn ideas into practice.

Read the book

Table of Contents

Prefact by NESTA and Design Council CABE
Foreword by the Prime Minister

Introducing the civic economy

Case Studies
#01  Arcola Theatre
#02  Baisikeli
#03  Brixton Village
#04  Bromley by Bow Centre
#05  Brooklyn Superhero Supply Co.
#06  Fab Lab Manchester
#07  Fintry Development Trust
#08  The George and Dragon
#09  Household Energy Services
#10  The Hub Islington
#11  Hørsholm Waste-to-Energy
#12  Incredible Edible Todmorden
#13  Jayride
#14  Livity
#15  Museum of East Anglian Life
#16  Neil Sutherland Architects
#17  Nottingham University Hospitals
#18  Olinda Psychiatric Hospital
#19  One Love City
#20  The People’s Supermarket
#21  Rutland Telecom
#22  Southward Circle
#23  Studio Hergebruik
#24  TCHO
#25  Tübingen User-led Housing
Lessons learned
A  Recognising the protagonists
B  Participation beyond consultation
C  Financial co-investment
D  Re-using existing assets
E  The experience of place
F  An open-ended approach
G  Generating change through networks
H  Recognising where value lies
Building a civic economy future

The 00:/ project team