online book: The Enabling City: Place-Based Creative Problem-Solving and the Power of the Everyday

Chiara Camponeschi is a change-maker with over six years of experience in people-powered change. Her latest project, The Enabling City, consists of a Creative-Commons licensed publication, The Enabling City: Place-Based Creative Problem-Solving and the Power of the Everyday, and a web-platform by the same name. Guided by principles such as collaboration, innovation and participation, Camponeschi combines theory with practice in an innovative toolkit that showcases pioneering initiatives in urban sustainability and open governance. The rich body of evidence collected in The Enabling City attests to the power of community in stimulating the kind of innovative thinking needed to tackle complex issues ranging from participatory citizenship to urban livability.

“I am a firm believer in the power of communities to solve their own needs and contribute to larger processes of change”, says Camponeschi. The recent graduate of York University based The Enabling City on international research she conducted as part of her Master in Environmental Studies in Toronto, Canada. “I believe that there are vast amounts of untapped knowledge and creativity out there that we need to unleash to make our cities more open and sustainable”, she continues. The Enabling City exists to document and celebrate the power of inter-actor collaboration and of our everyday experiences in enhancing problem-solving and social innovation worldwide.

The toolkit showcases a total of forty innovative initiatives across six categories: place-making; eating and growing; resource-sharing; learning and socializing; steering and organizing; and financing. Through what she refers to as ‘place-based creative problem-solving’, Camponeschi sketches out an approach to participation that leverages the imagination and inventiveness of citizens, experts, and activists in collaborative efforts that make cities more inclusive, innovative, and interactive.

Through their involvement, creative citizens worldwide demonstrate that citizenship is so much more than duties and taxes it’s about outcome ownership, enablement, and the celebration of the myriad connections that make up the collective landscape of the place(s) we call home. The Enabling City, then, is here to invite us to unleash the power of our creative thinking and to rediscover ‘the power of the everyday.’

Chiara Camponeschi works at the intersection of interdisciplinary research, social innovation and urban sustainability. She is passionate about the ‘creative citizen’ movement, and is committed to strengthening and supporting networks of grassroots social innovation worldwide. Originally from Rome, Italy Chiara has been involved with creative communities in Europe and Canada for over six years.

For more information about The Enabling City: Place-Based Creative Problem-Solving and the Power of the Everyday see To download a free copy of The Enabling City visit:


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