CIVICS: a map that generates social impact
CIVICS is a map for generating social impact. It is the first map of civic innovation activities in Ibero-America (Latin America, Spain, Portugal and Andorra) driven by the Civic Innovation Project of the Ibero-American General Secretariat since 2016, together with [VIC].
Civic innovation is the process that solves social problems with technologies (digital, social, ancestral) and innovative methodologies, through the involvement of the community affected. This means that citizens are no longer passive receivers of institutional actions, but active producers of their own solutions.
We have mapped over 4000 initiatives in 20 cities of 12 Latin American countries, including: Bogota, Buenos Aires, Cartagena de Indias, Guatemala City, Madrid, Managua, Medellin, Mexico City, Montevideo, Quibdó, Quito, Rio de Janeiro, San José de Costa Rica, Santos, São Paulo, San Salvador, Tegucigalpa and Zaragoza. On average, each initiative engages 5 participants, bringing the overall total to 20,000 people actively working in the region.
The mapped initiatives are categorized as: Mutual support and assistance, Urban art, Citizen science, Free culture, Rights and equality, Urban ecology and consumption, Collaborative economy, Expanded education, Mediation and Facilitation, Sustainable mobility, Policy and governance, Urban planning and heritage.
What is CIVICS?
It is a digital mapping tool in a geolocalized agenda format, where all civic innovation actions and related events taking place in our cities can be identified to enable participation. CIVICS is the mapping tool with the most information on current civic innovation.
Any citizen or institution can use CIVICS to learn about the citizen and government initiatives available in his/her neighborhood, including information on schedules of events, website, social network addresses, etc.
Each city’s map shows first the face-to-face workshops available, where “civil society” stakeholders, such as citizen initiatives, entrepreneurs, neighborhood platforms, activists, developers, artists, etc., come together to share collective knowledge in order to visualize and map the initiatives taking place in each city. This information is subsequently uploaded to the CIVICS platform, where the entire community can use and consult for free.
What are the benefits of CIVICS?
For citizen initiatives:
- Greater visibility of their activities and projects to other stakeholders.
- Links with other similar initiatives of interest.
- Access to open calls by the Civic Innovation Project (civic laboratories, social impact residences, etc.), as well as public administrations and institutions supporting CIVICS.
- Possibility of gaining access to spaces/institutions with the most active agendas.
For public administrations:
- Enhanced knowledge of things currently being done in the city, classified by thematic areas of interest, to help develop public policies and civic engagement programs.
- Increased awareness and specialization of their open calls using the platform for calls.
- Integrating some of the activities on the CIVICS agenda into their own.
For financial institutions:
- Greater specific knowledge of activities, projects and impact on potential beneficiaries.
CIVICS in 2017-2018
The Civic Innovation Project foresees three initial implementation stages for mapping Ibero-America using the CIVICS platform. At present, the first phase has been completed. At least 10 cities in 2017 and 10 more in 2018 will be mapped in the succeeding phases, bringing the total to 10,000 initiatives. Furthermore, a civic innovation agenda will be activated to deliver increased connectivity and benefits to participating initiatives.
CIVICS was presented at two international summits: UN HABITAT Summit III held in Quito (Ecuador) and 25th Summit of Heads of State and Government held in Cartagena de Indias (Colombia), both in October 2016.
Who supported CIVICS in 2016 ? > AECID, Telcel, Unidos en Red, the Ministeries of Culture of Argentina, Brasil y Colombia, Secretaria de Cultura del Estado de Rio de Janeiro, el Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires, la Intendencia Municipal de Montevideo, El Archivo General de la Nación de Colombia, la Alcaldía de Cartagena de Indias, el Gobierno de la Provincia de Santa Fe mediante el SantaLab, el Ayuntamiento de Madrid mediante Intermediae y Medialab-Prado, el Ayuntamiento de Zaragoza mediante Zaragoza Activa, los Centros Culturales de España en Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, México, Tegucigalpa, el Centro de Formación de la Cooperación Española de Cartagena de Indias, el Intituto do Procomum, Rio Criativo, El Colaboratorio, and Njambre.