An Enactive Approach to Social Innovation: Towards a Wise and Smart City

Thursday, 14 July 2016
Location: Hörsaal BIG 1 (Main Building)
Distributed Paper
Vincenzo GIORGINO, University of Torino, Italy
An innovative urban environment conceived as a Commons needs to be nurished by an embodied form of social sciences to guarantee a social transformation from within (Gibson-Graham et al. 2013, Gibson et al. 2015).

My proposal is mainly inspired by Viviana Zelizer’s approach to the economy as relational work (Zelizer 2011). Its extended version differs from the original one as it includes single individuals as pro-active subjects of change. Its model of self is grounded on the emerging literature on wisdom in organizations/communities and contemplative (economic) sociology. The aim is to go beyond the dominant techno-oriented focus on Smart Cities in favor of a more inclusive and enactive model inspired by the work of the neurobiologist Francisco Varela.

Following these premises, soft and life skills are considered the pillars on which digital technologies can be effective in the pursuit of individual and common well being. This experience-based model offers an embodied, non divisive strategy to those who conceive scientific knowledge - as well the city, in which the former is created  - as Commons. In methodology, it is based on a mixed method strategy that includes first-person, second-person and third-person methods.

References to recent transdisciplinary proposals for the Horizon 2020 European Research program (2015) will be provided.