School of commons

A new collaboration to bring circular coaches together with changemaker

Commons are material or non-material things that are owned, protected or produced by a community and managed according to the rules and standards of that community.

The School of Commons (SOC) is an innovative methodology to collect and disseminate knowledge about the commons on the one hand and to stimulate the transition of the commons on the other. Concretely, the SOC is an innovative model of cooperation between coaches, changemakers, cases and structural partners. The shared goal is to accelerate the development of the circular city based on design, technical insights, management models and new learning paradigms. We have already set up a teaching package of 10 evening classes and are planning a second edition of the SOC in the form of bootcamps.

This form of sharing knowledge and expertise can contribute to the rapid exponential growth of the local and global circular economy.

The project is experimental: learning and sharing knowledge creates the necessary competences for developing the circular city. We strive for natural growth, sufficient self-reflection and full self-sufficiency.


Partners Howest, Op Scherp bvba, Edwin Hantson cvba, Muntuit vzw, P2P foundation





  1. We developed a teaching package with 10 evening classes that changemakers can subscribe to. Each package works around a certain theme or 'pattern': sources, identity, organisation, dreams, making, disruption, systematic transformation and open-endedness.
  2. Based on the lessons from the first edition, we created a School of Commons game that will run as a thread through the second edition. It is a cooperative game, which facilitates knowledge exchange and promotes cooperation.
  3. We organised several test sessions for a five-day bootcamp, of which 2 were eventually planned for the second edition of the SOC. One is specifically aimed at artists and the other at organisations and professional coaches.
  4. We managed to develop a business plan to scale up the School of Commons after the subsidised period.


  1. The importance of peer learning and self-evaluation cannot be underestimated. By opening up the development of the School of Commons and actively inviting participants to contribute to our concept, our methodology became much more appreciated.
  2. We learned that it is important to clarify the roles of the different partners, so that everyone knows exactly what they have to engage in. The further development of our project went a lot smoother once we took on the pioneering role.
  3. Clear communication is of great value. We found that with the help of several animated videos, we could communicate the complex matter of the School of Commons much more easily and clearly.
  4. The development of a business plan for the future of the School of Commons gives our team the confidence to move forward with this project and make it a source of income. We believe that it is possible to spread our philosophy further through the methodology that has been developed.
10 Evening classes
100 Participants
8 Videos
2 Bootcamps planned


We have the ambition to take the School of Commons forward. We have already drawn up the basis of the business plan, and our team is confident about spreading our philosophy further through our developed methodology.

Specifically, we have incorporated all the feedback from the first series of evening classes and a new, improved School of Commons concept is currently being developed. This second edition will be a boot camp of 4 to 5 days, instead of an open evening school spread over 10 weeks. In this way, we want to make the SOC more coherent, strengthen the group dynamic and also appeal to an international audience.

Furthermore, several agreements have already been made to set up additional Schools of Commons in Flanders and Europe.