Urban Community Gardens between Participation and Rhetoric: The case of Comun’Orto (Rovereto).
Citizen participation is becoming a widespread practice in several urban areas, by means of collaborative governanceexperiences. Are these processes the result of real participation or just rhetorical expedients aimed at institutionalgoals? I will try to address this question by reflecting on the case of urban community gardens, and particularly onthe experience of Comun’Orto, a community project developed in the Brione district of Rovereto as the result of thejoint work of eight urban organizations that joined forces to nurture both social sharing and cohesion, as well asthe products of the earth.In this intervention, by reconstructing the map of the actors at stake, the organizational and territorial history that led tothis outcome, the peculiar characteristics of the neighbourhood, I will try to understand whether Comun’Orto succeeds inits participatory intentions, what are the dynamics of power between the actors involved and the actual territorial effectsof the project.
Keywords: urban community gardens, citizen participation, Comun’Orto, neighbourhood.
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