In 2016 Daphne Büllesbach spoke with Gerardo Pisarello, Barcelona deputy Mayor, about the experience of social movements taking power in Barcelona and about the possibility of a European network of cities for change. One year after that conversation, Barcelona en Comú is organising the Fearless Cities Summit, a moment in Barcelona that will help municipalist movements from all across Europe to build global networks of solidarity and hope in the face of hate, walls and borders. The rally will bring together mayors and councillors to share their vision of what it means to be a “fearless city”, from resisting state authoritarianism and combatting the far right to fighting speculation and guaranteeing the right to the city.
We are glad to contribute with a side event in the Fearless Cities Summit together with the European Commons Assembly, coordinated by Stacco Troncoso, Ana Méndez de Andés, Giuseppe Caccia, Marcelo Exposito, and Daphne Büllesbach. The event is a combined proposal by representatives of the European Commons Assembly (ECA) and the organisers of Transeuropa which will take place in Madrid end of October (25th to 29th) 2017. What examples do we witness in urban contexts around Europe that should be part of such an open exchange in Madrid? Which cities have transformed politics to re-invent and to re-enact democracy from below, experiencing concrete projects able to inspire new ways of social cooperation around commons, thus also preventing the threat of far-right growth? What are the problems and successes of these initiatives, which tools and strategies have been developed in response, and what do they teach us about supporting and scaling commons?
We want to invite everyone interested at this side-event as a moment of a process in which, starting from Fearless Cities meeting, the Madrid event could be one of the next steps in exchanging, discussing, socializing and wide-spreading real alternatives to current “state of affairs” in Europe.