← Agenda

6 aug - 31 dec

School of Commons: deep dive into patterns & tools for commoning

18:00 - 15:00

Due to COVID-19, we are forced to postpone the deep dive until further notice.

No doubt in your work as a coach* you’ve learned or read about commons, but do you also find it challenging to grasp how it works in everyday life?

Over the last 4 years, Timelab has developed the School of Commons: a model to exchange knowledge and expertise about commoning, based on a deep analysis of commoning practices all over the world. In collaboration with the P2P foundation, a multidisciplinary team created an open set of patterns, describing seven observations and their commoning alternatives, as well as tools to practice commoning. This project has been made possible thanks to Vlaanderen Circulair.

During the deep dive, game techniques are the framework of the commoning experience. This embodied learning method makes commons accessible, hands on and highly transformative. You will build more powerful collaborations through understanding your own commoning strategies and experiences as a coach. You will receive immersive insight into commoning transition mechanisms and gain personal resilience to overcome obstacles in your own local practice.

The experience and feedback of the School of Commons will be discussed during the co-creation policy event of the European project Cultural and Creative Spaces and Cities (CCSC), which can lead to policy recommendations.
More information on this event will be added soon.

*We define a coach as someone who has experience with commoning methods, strategies and/or tools and can apply them in peer-learning environments.

This embodied learning method makes commons accessible, hands on and highly transformative.

What to expect:

  • A 4-day deep dive through the setting of an embodied game environment with the support of professional coaches.
  • Real-life cases built upon your experiences integrated into the game. 
  • Introduction to commons related concepts and methodologies used in the game such as pattern language, the co-city cycle and the sextuple helix.
  • Introduction to the School of Commons pattern language and open tools such as sociocracy and common good balance.
  • Plenty of time to break out and discover our videos, library and readings. 
  • Shared meals and accommodation, exploratory conversations, artistic encounters and walks through the city of Ghent.

Apply by filling in the registration form

This edition of The School of Commons will be unforgettable. For 4 days, and with 12 peers, 5 coaches and guests with unique backgrounds in co-creation and participation, you will have time and space for understanding how to weave your own path in urban commons practice, commoning transition and social agency.

The team

Trainers, coaches and developers: Evi Swinnen, Marieke Maertens, Laure-Anne Vermaercke Vanessa Brazeau


Timelab, supported by the Flemish Government, has made significant financial contribution to the development of the tools, methodology and network that form the School of Commons. Our organisation practices an alternative model that supports economic relationships, which contribute toward a culture of deepening solidarity. We see your participation as entering a relationship as co-producers and collaborators, and we believe in the sharing of knowledge.

In this spirit, all our tools and knowledge are freely accessible on our website. For participation in the physical School of Commons in Ghent, we only charge the basic costs of organizing the school (production and material costs and fees). Here you find the overview of the estimated rates:

  • €700 participation fee per participant. This includes fees for trainers, material costs and the costs to adjust the game to actual cases based on the participants experience.
  • An additional €300 for food (4x breakfast, 4lunch, 4x dinner and snacks in between.) We believe that shared meals will enhance the feeling of belonging and the exchange of experiences between participants.
  • An additional €300 for accommodation (You will get a private room in one of the beautiful shared accommodations, from Friday night to Wednesday morning.) We believe sharing accommodation will improve the community feeling between participants. All accommodations are in walking distance of Timelab. If you wish to book your own private accommodation, please let us know.
* Those who join us from the CCSC network can choose a 30% discount covered by the project. 
* We commit to challenging economic marginalization and exclusion. Therefore, if you are in difficult financial circumstances, this shouldn’t stop you from participating. Please let us know in your motivation and we can discuss a reduced rate. We need no explanation.


Location Venue: Timelab, Kogelstraat 34 - 9000 Gent
Shared accommodation nearby

Food allergies, special diet? Let us know.

18:00 - 15:00