LOTE events are an important part of an indirect strategy for regional and local development: attracting bright people with empty spaces for free, to stay.
Why do we do this? Because there is an urgent need to create infrastructure that supports much needed creative solutions in response to systemic crises, and p2p collaboration on a massive scale. We have been prototyping this approach with the unMonastery this year and are convinced that this is worth investing in, scaling up and replicating. As well as creating the conditions that enable more big ideas like it, increasing the capacity to execute them and enable them to emerge.
This is not about events, but about permanent changes of the population. The long term strategy of the LOTE events: they are part of a local/regional/national development package in which Edgeryders come to a place and stay if government/foundations/private sector provide break-even support for two years, and a space.
In addition to its role in triggering “grounded spaces”, we would like to make LOTE a well-known brand described as the “Davos forum for the alternative / edge economies”. We would like it to be used:
- to connect current or past projects of funders with other projects to make them more successful through synergies.
- for live-testing and evaluating prototypes and proposed projects "from the Edge for the future".
On a longer time scale, we sell projects to cities, as part of that package we integrate LOTE4 into the budget as a place for:
- live demoing
- express project development / high-level troubleshooting
- greater project resilience
- completing a cycle of up scaling.
We are interested both in becoming part of local communities, and drawing interesting people into them (under certain conditions). This means both connecting with powerful partners AND supporting our peers who already live and work in the cities hosting the events. While English is our shared working language, many people in the community are multi-lingual and interested in including local contexts, cultures and languages in the events whenever possible.
We already have two success stories.
- Edgefest was started as a side event to LOTE by us in collaboration with local partners in Strasbourg in 2012, and is still running strong in the city.
- LOTE3 was set up in Matera,and was supersceded by the unMonastery being set up in the City (with one highly technically skilled person having formally moved to the city and collaborating with peers at the local University and schools). UnMonastery itself is set to reopen as a school in Matera.
EdgeRyders tries to ensure that no one is excluded from community events for financial reasons. In addition to it being consistent with our values, we do this because we know that creativity is combinatorial. In striving for maximum manageable diversity, we are creating the conditions for truly brilliant and inspiring things to come out of our gatherings. As well as barnraising around projects that make a positive impact on the local community who play host to the gathering.
Everyone willing to contribute to the topic and event is able to participate. Everyone comes away with new perspectives and relationships they may not have otherwise had access to. The city or town hosting gains local development support and locally anchored projects driven by local-international teams.
For this year’s event we are collaborating with the local administration in Matera, a spectacular city located in southern Italy and one of the oldest settlements on the planet. They are supporting the event with a venue, and enough money to cover some of the costs (30K Euros).
To explore how you or your organisation can support LOTE events write to email@example.com or call +3225881268.