Learning through co-creation: how to solve urban problems with citizens

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The public realm is a place where urban stakeholders interact and come into conflict. The aim of this paper is to present the LOOPER participatory co-creation methodology and platform developed in the Learning Loops in the Public Realm (LOOPER) project to demonstrate ‘learning loops’ i.e. new ways of decision-making which bring together citizens, stakeholders and policymakers to iteratively learn how to address urban challenges. The methodology and platform are demonstrated in three Living Labs with different spatial, cultural and thematic contexts. The main issues being solved are traffic and mobility in Brussels; traffic and green space in Manchester; and air and noise pollution in Verona. The paper will discuss the overall approach and methodology developed in the LOOPER project to support finding solutions to urban problems in a participatory co-creation process, and its broader implications for living lab approaches to urban transformation. Some interim findings emerge in the context of three main social science strands: social learning and collective intelligence; local government and participatory co-governance; and the co-design/coproduction process in the urban environment. Work in progress from the LOOPER Living Labs demonstrates these wider themes in the light of front-line experience. Keywords: co-creation; traffic safety; air pollution
Planning for Transition – book of proceedings 31; 2