EPICA – Empowering Participation in Culture and Architecture: Activating Public Resources for and with Community

The underlying premise behind the EPICA project is the need to enhance the concept of participation, both in theory and in practice, if we are to take a serious step toward establishing a democratic and sustainable society and increasing the human community's quality of life.

Starting from the analysis of the concept and theories of participation in culture, planning, governance, budgeting, the main goal of the EPICA project (Empowering Participation in Culture and Architecture: Activating Public Resources for and with Community) is the fundamental quest for the alternative system solutions and decision-making models in culture and architecture, based on participatory principles, that are socially and ecologically responsible and economically justified, highly robust and oriented towards justice, fairness and solidarity in our societies.

Under the term “participationdifferent processes and actions pursuing the public interest are meant, which include people (residents of neighbourhoods, cities, villages, including the members of vulnerable and marginalised groups, together with other stakeholders such as CSOs and academia) taking an active role in decision-making and governing public resources.

Supported by the Science Fund of the Republic of Serbia through the IDEAS program, the project gathers a team of leading, internationally recognized researchers and activists in the field of participation in culture (contemporary arts and heritage), architecture and spatial planning in Serbia, coming from the Faculty of Dramatic Arts, Faculty of Architecture, Institute for Economic Sciences, Faculty of Sport and Psychology - Tims and Faculty of Fine Arts.

In a three-year period, involving numerous external associates, the project will offer 1) innovative and systematic, empirically tested models and tools for participation in culture, architecture and urban planning; 2) relevant recommendations for public policies; 3) a framework for a new transdisciplinary theory of participation, and 4) new methodological approaches to participation research. All activities will contribute to local economic and cultural development, social inclusion and environmental protection.

Please find more information on: epica.rs.