Project Proposal: Active membrane

Active membrane

the unMonastery unGovernance through emergent rituals

The challenge ­

On one side unMonks. On the other Matera’s citizens and stakeholders.

How can unMonks become a community?

How can they listen to Matera’s citizens and stakeholders, integrate with them, have an impact addressing the 12 challenges?

How can we co-create a living organism for a 4 months period, creating mutual exchanges among unMonks and Matera?

We are doing a transplant.

We are putting together a rich diversity of mainly stranger cells (the unMonks, from different countries, experiences, characters and with diverse skills) to create a totally new organ. And this organ will need to become part of a living organism that is Matera. The main challenge is first to have the organ working, than to let it exchange blood with the living organism, letting it grow and avoiding rejection.


“Active membrane” is a facilitated emerging governance to adress these challenges.

The key elements are listening and co-creation practices and rituals, internally and externally.

It is a framework integrating daily practices and rituals in the unMonastery, events to listen to Matera and tools to constantly synthesize, plan, act and collecting feedback.

Evaluation ­ 

For the specific unMonastery Prime in Matera I suggest to evaluate the impact by the degree of “blood” exchanged internally in the unMonastery and with Matera:

  • degree of resilience and loosely "coupledness" of the living organism
  • new mutual relations established
  • new skill set created
  • capacity to listen to weak signal, to prototype and collect feedback

For the long term replicability of the unMonastery otherwhere I suggest to evaluate through:

  • adopted working rituals and practices
  • best practices created
  • lessons learned from the errors

all to be transmitted to next unMonastery projects

What do you need to know? ­

who will be the unMonks, how many

how will be the unMonastery areas/furniture/services

there will be someone to facilitate/supervise from ER or Matera2019 with us? Which role will he play?

we’ll need materials (from post-it to cardboard, from cushions to megaphones…): how this will be managed?


I’m an experienced facilitator and community builder, improv actor and dancer, yogi.

Among my experiences there are:

  • the co-creation and community building process in The Hub Roma [ and]
  • the foundation of Co-Design Jam [] in Rome
  • the introduction of co-creation and participative processes to change the culture in Fastweb (TelCo Company).


1-2 months before February 2014

through mails, surveys, skype calls, shared documents co-creation and brainstorming session:

  • i'll get in contact with all the others unMonks to already start the listening and co-creation process of a first prototype of the unGovernance and to begin the community building. 
  • i will start the same process with main Matera stakeholders.

first 2 weeks of February

  • activities to know each others and to co-creating a rythm and discipline in the unMonastery


  • fine tuning the rythm
  • consolidating emerging rituals, also celebration ones
  • opening to listen to the city