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I-LivAlps: a conclusion for the future

Two participants at the workshops in Stroppo San Martino discuss social innovation. © Christian Baumgartner

September saw the fourth and final I-LivAlps workshop on social innovation held in the Valle Maira, Italy. The end of the project has produced a rich harvest.

Many of the new and returning participants in the workshops were unanimous: an I-Livalps event is an outstanding example of co-operation between generations, as well as between lay people and experts from various fields, as well as CIPRA members and outsiders. With the “I-LivAlps” project CIPRA intends to strengthen the interest, knowledge, skills and engagement of young people in particular in the Alps. The results of the four events will provide CIPRA with a basis for other projects – for instance the awareness-raising project alpMonitor – and offer young people ideas for the shaping their lives and homelands. Other topics include tourism, housing & work, and spatial planning.

The fourth and final workshop took place in Stroppo San Martino, a remote community in the Valle Maira, and was devoted to the topic of “social innovation”. The task facing participants was different from the previous events’ objectives: this time they were to address a concrete case study on the ground. Participants were offered company and support by the mayor and other residents. Toni Büchel, a participant in every workshop and joint facilitator at Stroppo San Martino, stated: “The subject of social innovation is still in its infancy, but has great potential. It needs motivated people, but also a fundamental appraisal of how we can organise ourselves differently as a society and as individuals.”

Part of the strategy and part of the success was that all four I-LivAlps events developed a life of their own, benefiting from the ever-changing configuration of the participants, the facilitators and the adapted methodical approach. Michaela Hogenboom, project manager for youth issues at CIPRA International, says: “I-LivAlps was a project in which the process itself was extremely important.” Participants of all generations, she said, were confronted in a wide variety of ways with one of the challenges facing the Alps. “They enthusiastically accepted these challenges and worked towards solutions, ideas and visions for the future.” The meetings produced project ideas both large and small, while motivation and inspiration surrounded the workshops like an invisible veil. Michaela Hogenboom hopes that this co-operative venture will manage to establish itself in the future.

The I-LivAlps project was financed by Erasmus+, CARIPLO and the Natum Foundation, while alpMonitor was financed by the Bristol Stiftung.

 

Blog entry (de) about the workshop: here

Further information:

www.cipra.org/en/cipra/international/projects/current/i-livalpswww.cipra.org/de/news/standpunkt-das-gesellschaftliche-miteinander-neu-denken (de, fr, it, sl) , www.cipra.org/de/news/zwischen-abwanderung-und-erschliessungsdruck (de, fr, it, sl) , www.cipra.org/de/news/ein-zukunftsbild-fuer-den-wintertourismus (de, fr, it, sl)