Future of Citizen-based Initiatives (FOCI)

How can processes of ‘bottom-up’ cooperation either among citizens or between citizens and governments and/or business partners lead to an open and more resilient society

Hub: Future of Citizen-based initiatives

The role of citizens in today’s society is changing from a reliance on the state – the welfare state in the early nineties – to them taking the lead in addressing political issues and self-governance. Today, we see a rise in bottom-up initiatives and new forms of collectives which strive to solve societal challenges in areas such as health care, energy, insurance and infrastructure.

While these developments influence the role of the state in society, they also have implications for relationships between citizens. Does the success of bottom-up approaches contribute to creating and sustaining an open and resilient society without causing new forms of exclusion? Can cooperation within citizen initiatives be facilitated? And how can citizens be mobilised to become involved in societal issues?

Citizen-based initiatives

The IOS-Hub Future of Citizen-based Initiatives aims to advise, promote and stimulate citizen-based initiatives, as well as to improve the effectiveness of bottom-up initiatives aimed at various societal challenges. It will apply and extend scientific interdisciplinary knowledge on the properties and dynamics of bottom-up initiatives. The Hub is a platform for collaboration between Utrecht University researchers and societal partners on the theme of citizen-based initiatives for cooperation and resilience.


Please contact the IOS-Hub Future of Citizen-based Initiatives by: foci-hub@uu.nl