The public, the private, the citizen and the commons | 1 PHD 101 quotes

I have launched the 1PHD 101quotes campaign.

I am looking for theoretical support with references and quotes to 101 statements I have made in the initial description of my thesis project.

I have divided them by topic.
Today I share the one I have associated with:
The public, the private, the citizen and the commons

You can leave a comment here on the blog with the references or directly on the working document.

We observe an unresolved tension between the public and the private, and the new imaginaries that the “common” areas bring to us seem to be no longer sufficient. We need an intermediate step between the “I” recognised as “private”, and the “whole” recognisable with the “public”, the “we” where the “I” can be recognised without being diluted in the whole, and at the same time it is made easier for it to emerge from its individual isolation.

It is also clear that there is a tension between the closed environments that are the “institutional” and “domestic” versus the more open environments such as the “market” and the “social”.

We observe an emerging phenomenon where, between the open and the closed, another intermediate and hybrid sphere appears where the security and stability assured by the closed serves as a basis for the capacity for innovation and transformation assured by the open to occur and settle in the territory. This requires the creation of a new relational framework in which, instead of relating to each other from a closed and defined (legal) “sphere” and another more de-regulated one, we move on to do so from spheres in which the starting point and the actors involved are very clear, but with greater freedom to establish other types of relationships.

It is a question of allowing us to give strength to “relationships” in addition to “the rules”, which is essentially what defines “the situated”.

We want to describe and make visible a type of practice that, without necessarily being aware of it, is activating a new sphere of encounter and action with the capacity to generate Situated Collective Intelligence processes.

The ability to think in a network opens up a new field for collective construction that we cannot ascribe to any of those known to date.

Collaboration and collective intelligence processes represent an emerging practice where there is a renewed capacity of the inhabitants of a territory to achieve processes of transformation and improvement of their environment independently of the action of the public sector, the private sector or the third sector, but from a new area of hybridization that includes all of them. These practices are strengthening the spatial dimension of living, reinforcing communities of proximity.

To activate this type of process we need a new framework of action and new forms of articulation that will activate collaboration between actors who are not used to collaborating. Many might think that activating this type of process is practically impossible, or that it can only happen spontaneously and that in any case they would always be processes that are very difficult to manage and with little capacity to generate really important and useful results.

In recent years, more and more thinkers, theorists and researchers have shown that there is another field of action that they call “commons”. The concept is actually very old, but since the formation of modern states and market models, we had practically forgotten this area of the commons.

The concept of the commons is essential to recover the importance of the capacity of people, and therefore the inhabitants of a territory, to organise themselves and to improve the quality of their environment, beyond typical public and private practices.

The elements that allow us to describe and differentiate a field of action in the territory. In this research we always take as a reference point the person who is the protagonist or inhabitant of each area.

One of the most classic situations when we take into account the possibility and the capacity to act collectively in a territory is in the overvaluation of the feeling of solidarity above all else, coming to obviate the personal and domestic dimension understood as the sphere of selfishness. So the collective is understood as a form of balance and equilibrium of the individualistic action we do from the domestic or from the market, that is, the private.

We need to incorporate the personal and domestic aspects together with the social relational, because if we lose sight of the self, we also lose sight of the why and purpose of our actions and our own lives.

Another classic problem has to do with the identification of economic dynamics with particular interests which therefore have to be kept out of solidarity, relational and collective practices, in order to avoid the possible perversion of the process. In the end, this imaginary has led to the proliferation of professionals in the collective and participation field, that is, an “elite” that can afford these practices because others are preparing their meals at home, or because they have decided to accept a labour exploitation that takes place in the market space that we keep separate and far from our daily relational space.

Often we end up building spaces of greater social relational purity protected from the impure such as the market and the domestic, where I have to go anyway.

I would like to take this opportunity to remind you that I have thought of three ways to generate returns for the community:

  1. I will quote the contributors in the research;
  2. I will leave the entire methodology open so that others can replicate it;
  3. I will leave the contents in open access;

If you have suggestions about more ways to generate returns and in general to improve this experiment please read your comment right here on the blog.

Previously I have published the statements about:

Technology, Physical-Digital Hybridization and Glocal Proximity | 1 PHD 101 quotes

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