We’ve been selected to the “Collaborative Commons Startup Support Programme” from Barcelona City Council !

La Comunificadora is a programme from Barcelona Activa realised together with PlatoniqFoundation Goteo and the Free Knowledge Institute, and a large group of people and organisations working for the collaborative economy, free culture and commons movements.

Barcelona Activa is Barcelona’s local development agency with a plethora of services for startups and enterpreneurial people. A programme focused on the economy of the commons was missing, until now…

15 selected projects, 5 training modules

The programme began with a call for projects in November, and assessors then a Screening Committee, selected fifteen projects all oriented towards collaborative commons, coopdev, etc

Five training modules were created for topics covering the commons and the collaborative economy; sustainability and business models; knowledge management, free tools, entrepreneurial knowledge and skills; legal issues and financing alternatives.

First seeds of a Business Model: Office Agriculture

What if urban agriculture and food relocalisation happened directly in the office?

Guillaume’s left his job to start Aquapioneers project because he was fed up to work in an office too disconnected from nature.

This “big green disconnect” could partly explain depression and burnout of many people working in an office environment.

Doing a bit of research, we identified disruptive initiatives toward urban agriculture in the office as a way to improve the body, mind and spirit of those people. On one side, you start to see small green startups like Ciel Mon Radis, AURA , etc proposing open space garden activities to reconnect employees. On the other side, you have big giant firms like Google, Microsoft, and Ebay/Paypal that are bridging urban agriculture with Corporate Social Responsibility.

A recent white paper done by “myfood”, an independent startup in urban agriculture, highlighted the fact that most employees who have experienced severe stress at work were going back to farming as their next destination.

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Reconnect employees with office agriculture

Horticultural therapy is a process in which plants and gardening activities are used to improve the body, mind and spirit of those people of all ages, backgrounds and abilities.

Imagine how many unused square meters of corporate terraces, rooftops, gardens, and parking spaces exist. By turning these spaces into productive units, we could reconnect company’s employees, educate and feed them, while at the same time improving the company brand image

“Office aquaponics services” here we go !

We used the resources offered by the Comunificadora to explore a business model around office AG leveraging our Aquaponics Kits Made in Fab Lab, and start to contact potential customers to pilot our approach. More info will come about this in the next coming months

Office Aquaponics

Legal Status

The tutors from La Comunificadora helps us to understand what are the legal status existing in Spain that we can build upon to start our activities in Barcelona.

From the nature of our activities, the community oriented approach and the open source character of our project, creating an Association (i.e. non for profit) make sense for 2017 to pave the way of Cooperative model if everything go well in the next coming years.

Use a Crowd funding as a “Fund raising + Market Study + Communication “ Strategy

Crowdfunding seems to be the most ethical, collective and committed model to kickstart our project and protect the open source nature of our approach.

Because some of the perks we will offer in the crowdfunding campaign are directly related to the activities we would like to develop in Barcelona, we will us this campaign as a real market study to test which activities gain the most traction here and focus on these ones later one.