Developing Ourghema and creating an open village spaces' network

As you have asked; @nadia, these are the goals for Ourghema in 2020 (Super short as you have asked!)
My plans are:

The Hackerspace: First Quarter of 2020, I work on launching it full time 3 days per week.
An Incubator: Second Quarter of 2020, I work on launching it full time 3 days per week.
Preparing and Launching the call for potential Open Village spaces: Third Quarter of 2020: Finding potential spaces in the MENA region that we could collaborate with in the Open Village project:I work on it full time 3 days per week.
Selecting the eligible spaces:Fourth Quarter of 2020, and this is the point that I can’t tell what can do about it, as I don’t know what are the plans for the Edgeryders about the open vllage and the spaces network

These are one sentences goals, if you feel they are unclear, let me know

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Ok so let’s go a bit deeper in defining these goals.

What is the purpose of launching the hackerspace? The incubator? The OpenVillage spaces?

Why are you aiming for 3 days a week as opposed to one or 4?

What are the resources required for each one?

On a more general level: What do you think will come out of it/what is the bigger picture of what you are trying to achieve in Medenine and what is the strategy you are taking? How do you think we can figure out how things are progressing while we are running these activities or pursuing these goals - so we can tell what it makes sense to make more of an invesment in? And what are the resources needed to

These are the questions I would

In a genral answer, Ourghema is an innovative space, I work on the community of Medenine and help them see the potenital they have in themselves, or in the region. So many great ideas were born in the space by this community, and they are still creating great things, now if this was created by a basic space, nothing but chairs, tables and a very basic coffee shop place, then what if this is developed? with technology? with greater human ressources?

Why Launching the Hackerspace?
Investing in technology, is something that the whole world is doing now, in this hackerspace the community will be introduced to new technologies and perspectives, this may help them start some new projects specially for the IT students (we have an IT university in Medenine so it will be benificial for them) and I aim to first work with children / students, introducing to them this world and how you may develop your ideas to a realistic things with technology, something that @matthias is doing all the time and inspries me with that.
Moreover, I basically didn’t invest financially in this, all the materials were a gift from Ibtakiroo Association, whom will be defining the strategic points of the hackerspace, along with my partner 3DPROTOKSI in the coming months.

Why Launching the Incubator?
Ourghema has been a dynamic space in its first year, I was observing these students how they think and how they process their ideas, I was amazed by their energy, but then I have always seen how the processing of the ideas are messed up! I have always had them coming to me and asking for help with that, so I thought Okey, why not launch an incubator! not for start ups, but for the organizations / associations and help their ideas become a more impactful actions! and in the future we will work on start ups as well!
Why working on the Open Village Spaces?

What if we have a network of changemaking spaces in the regions that wants to change their reality? Moving all together, supporting each other ? now if we speak about working on the MENA region, helping the social movement, and when we have a group of spaces moving together, can you imagine the impact of that? so this is not an activity or an event that would be funded once and then it is over, this is rather a link that can stand there for years, and that can reach thousands of people at the same time in the MENA region as a whole! so if we think numbers, if we think impact: that is BIG.

The Resources:

  • The Hackerspace:
  1. Capital Resources: Which is already there (3D Printers / Laptop / Robotic Materials)

  2. Human Resources: Specialized / Experiences people ( 3DPROTOKSI / Ibtakiroo team…)

  • The Incubator:
  1. Human Resources: Experienced People (volunteers as I can’t afford paying them, otherwise, financial resources would be needed)
  • The Open Village Spaces:
  1. Human Resources: Experienced People

  2. Financial Resources

Less then three days I think would slow down the pace of the projects, Working more than three days is possible, I am flexible with time, but I will always need some days to work on the space (administrative papers, raw materials, the coffee shop, clubs…) and ensure that the daily activities of the space are going well.

I, personally, would always work on developing ourghema, you know that it wasn’t funded by anyone yet I launched it and I am seeing how it is getting bigger, how it is making great social impact and how it literally became home for ta lot of great people in Medenine, and now I am going to develop it and improve it, and I am already working on it, the incubator / Hackerspace are plans that are going to be a reality for sure, but then with your support they can even be more impactful!
Medenine is developing really quickly, and I think that in the future it will be a good destination for investment: if we think about the future, the companies that will work on rebuilding Libya, some of the companies that want to invest in Africa, are going to settle in Medenine (Along to that Medenine will be included in the silk road , and there are big Chinese / Tunisian projects that are going to be implemented in Medenine ) So I am seeing a huge potential.
This is the bigger picture of what I am seeing about Medenine, Ourghema’s role is to be part of this social / economic shift in the region, we help shape the young future change makers of the region and of Tunisia, the strategy is developing their soft skills / tech skills / and experiences through a set of activities and events, and through the space’s coworking / incubator / hackerspace…
The metrics are the number of initiatives that are going to be created, the number of people we are reaching, and even the regions that we cover, the economic growth as well.

Ok so as I understand it you want to work on:

  1. A structured approach to supporting local youth to develop, organise and discover tools to realise their ideas
  2. A network that connects places running activities and projects where young people to develop their skills and experiences through working together
  3. Drawing investment to Medenine from companies that work on rebuilding Libya and on planned Chinese and Tunisian developments (I am not sure I understand what this is - maybe you can explain this in more detail?)

What is needed to make it happen:

  • Community building and coordination (offline and online)
  • People with specialised skills to help with the technologies
  • Experienced project leaders/realisors of self-sustaining/successful intiatives
  • Financial resources for covering additional costs of the holders of the space. A question: how would you engage the owners of the spaces to join the network if there are no financial resources available to incentivise them? What would they need to be part of it? This is not something you need to answer now, but it is something we have to keep in mind as a big question.

Measuring progress: if we were starting from a blank slate, the approach I would take is somewhat different.

  • At the level of the individual participant: Rather than measure the number of initiatives people are coming up with - perhaps we can find a way to measure the number of meaningful exchanges/collaborations that result in people developing their skills. Or find some tool for individuals to map out their individual learning path, and have some peer mentorship/assessment of how they are doing.

  • At the level of the participating space in the network: Perhaps we could also look at the rate of initiatives that go on to become self sustaining, the number of people engaged in projects, and how long/how much on average does each participant invest in projects or activities. A question there would be how to make this visible in a way that does not feel like policing or judging people.

  • For overall impact of all three: closer to what Alberto outlines here.



This was to explaing the actual situation in Medenine, so this is too big forme to work on, but my point was that things are progressing here, and then if Ourghema work on the active young community of Medenine, (the hackerspace / Coworking, events…) then there is a possibilty that these people would be part of this economic movement, launching their start ups and bringing new ideas and initiatives that can be part of this huge economic / social shift. this is a very vague idea.

we could work on raising some funding for that, for instance, the largest coworking spaces support the coworking movement by I think paying their first annual rent, funding part of their events or stuff like that (I think we can see how we can find a way for this)

Concerning the measuring progress, yes I agree with what you have said

I don’t have access to this topic

I like how Yosser is evaluating the geopolitical role of OurGhema :slight_smile: So I’ll add a bit about what I see as the big trends and developments that should inform the strategy for a network of spaces, and for one space caring about local development.

First, civilization of the kind we have in Europe and the U.S. has become stuck. This is a dead-end road as it ends in ecological destruction, industrial efficiency used only to produce waste and high levels of wealth and power inequality. Further, historical examples show that complex societies at the end of their “development” are hard to steer and there is a distinct probability that these societies will collapse under the weight of their own social complexity.

Tunisia and the MENA region in general is still before that stage and can choose its path wisely. If a network of grassroots innovation spaces would want to contribute to that, then green living, climate change reversal, sustainability innovations, resource efficiency, degrowth and so on are important themes that will not go away in the decades to come but will only grow in importance and urgency. It’s the same theme as before for Open Village (“making the good life happen”), just with the realization that this can only be done with an ecological approach.

With that kind of theme, Edgeryders’ planned Reef 2.0 space would be another member of the network already. Also there is COACT Lab which might want to join, itself being part of the very impressive Valldaura Labs near Barcelona.

I’m pretty sure the link is wrong and Nadia wanted to post this one:

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