Communities of practice

In the framework of the PREPSOIL project, a EU-funded project aiming to facilitate the implementation of the EU Soil Mission we are currently carrying out a screening of community-led initiatives across Europe where actors get together to address, and act upon, a specific concern related to soils. In a buzz word we call the latter soil Communities of Practice (CoPs). []

In other EU languages, these might be linked to the work of (IT) Gruppi di Lavoro, Cooperative di Comunità, Comitati; (ES) Comunidades de buenas practicas; (D) Arbeitsgemeinschaft.

Although there is no official clear-cut definition of the term, there are 3 key elements distinguishing CoPs (source ):

  • A common domain: the concern collectively identified and which the community is aiming to address;
  • A community: the organized group of actors (i.e. citizens, civil society organizations, public authorities, businesses) who are actively engaged in the process;
  • A practice: the action/measures that the community decides to develop/put in place in order to promote/improve/solve the identified concern.

In the context of soils, a Community of Practice could be defined as a group of people/actors that have gathered together to either address an identified threat to soils in their territories by implementing a set of identified actions, or a group of people that are promoting the adoption of alternative models of soil management to ensure that the soil’s capacity to deliver ecosystem services is preserved over the long run.

Utsikt Den Magiske Fabrikken
Vestfold, Norway

Den magiske fabrikken og Vestfold biogjødselforum

By turning food waste and manure into bio-fertilisers, Den Magiske Fabrikken are able to offer the farmers in Vestfold Biogjødselforum an organic fertiliser product.
Land uses: Agricultural
Karbon Agro
Østfold, Norway

Karbon Agro

Karbon Agro is a Norwegian take on the international concept Conservation Agriculture. Starting as a project lead by the Norwegian agricultural extension service NLR, a group of experienced farmers have been collected, who have applied conservation agriculture practices.
Land uses: Agricultural
Incredible Edible Network
United Kingdom, Worldwide

Incredible Edible Network

The Incredible Edible Network is a network of people in different cities throughout the UK, and beyond, that connects people within communities by engaging them in the transformation of the own urban (from small villages to large towns) landscape where they live, and by turning disused urban plots into a source of healthy food.
Land uses: Agricultural, Natural, Urban
Super Terram
Brussels, Belgium

Super Terram (towards a multispecific urbanism)

Super Terram is a co-creation research project focused on Brussels' soils and the life animating them. By placing living soils at the heart of citizen mobilizations, the project aims to bring out new ways of developing our cities that are more sensitive to the multiple relationships that unfold under our feet.
Land uses: Urban
Région Pays de la Loire, France

Territorial consultation on (soil) organic matter by multiple stakeholders in the North of France (ConcerTO)

The ConcerTO methodology aims to develop a global vision of existing and potential value chains, current experiments, and projects’ learning around the topic of organic matter, with the aim to make the latter a tool for territorial development supporting the deployment of the circular bioeconomy.
Land uses: Agricultural, Natural, Urban
Sorbas, Spain

Sunseed Desert Technology

Sunseed Desert Technology is a Spanish association which focuses on living sustainably in an off-grid village in a semi-arid environment. Our Organic Gardens and Drylands Restoration departments run since more than 30 years to experiment practices to improve ecosystem functioning.
Land uses: Agricultural, Natural
PD Krakovany
Krakovany (Slovakia), Slovakia

PD Krakovany – Stráže (Agricultural cooperative Krakovany – Stráže)

Established in 1991, after change of management in 2012, the Agricultural cooperative Krakovany-Stráže was struggling to run its activities. Today it became a well-known lively example of regenerative soil management in Western Slovakia (Trnava Region).
Land uses: Agricultural
Urban Vegetable Gardens
Badajoz, Spain

Huertos Urbanos Suerte de Saavedra (Urban Vegetable Gardens)

The Urban Vegetable Gardens Suerte de Saavedra are a collective project of an entire neighborhood in the city of Badajoz, pioneers in Extremadura, which arose from the Neighborhood Association in Suerte Saavedra in order to generate new social relationships around the care and use of the soil.
Land uses: Urban

Do you want your soil Community of Practice to be here on PREPSOIL?

Tell us more!