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Project Description:
CER.TOSA will contribute to the development of a sustainable and equitable energy community in Torpignattara, Rome, by focusing on the needs and aspirations of local communities. It will conduct a participatory analysis of socio-economic vulnerabilities in the neighbourhood of Torpignattara, using open and citizen science approaches.

Project Type: Kick Starter
Theme: Cities for Life, Socio-economic inclusion
Mentor:Margarita Angelidou

CER.TOSA: the Renewable and Solidarity Energy Community for the neighbourhood

The citizen science pilot CER.TOSA: the Renewable and Solidarity Energy Community for the neighbourhood is part of the path towards the creation of a Renewable and Solidarity Energy Community born on 14 September 2023 in Rome, Italy, promoted by the association A Sud and the Villa Certosa Neighbourhood Committee. 

The energy community’s need not only to promote the development of renewable energy from the bottom-up but also to support the future solidarity actions among the local community gave rise to the idea of activating the dense network of associations and collectives in the neighbourhood and mobilising the inhabitants of Torpignattara and Certosa in a participatory research action, carried out between June and November 2023, aimed at gathering information on the vulnerabilities of the area and the inhabitants as well as on potential actions that could be activated or strengthened to improve the quality of local life.

Starting from the definition of the research framework between A Sud and the Villa Certosa neighbourhood committee, targeted interviews were carried out with “opinion leaders” and members of associations, collectives and organisations based in the Torpignattara neighbourhood, to develop, based on the input gathered, a questionnaire to extend the data collection to a larger number of participants thanks to a survey. 

To facilitate the dissemination and help fill out the survey, promoted and disseminated in 4 languages (Italian, Bengali, Arabic and English), 25 volunteers, most of whom were neighbourhood residents, were engaged and trained. Thanks to this process, 123 contributions were collected and their results are accessible through a database and in the report Living places: participatory survey on social vulnerabilities in the Certosa and Torpignattara neighbourhoods. It constitutes the guidelines on which the CERtosa Renewable and Solidarity Energy Community will be able to direct its future solidarity actions, responding to the needs and aspirations of the local communities. The report also aims to provide useful indications to all private and public actors involved in promoting the collective interest and quality of life in the neighbourhood for the orientation of their local actions.

Now the energy community Cer.tosa is expecting public funding to kick start solar panel installation to start producing renewable energy and be able to generate utility to be directed to support community projects, following the guidelines and inputs from citizens facilitated through the pilot.

The pilot was made possible thanks to the technical and financial support from the IMPETUS project funded by the European Union. Through the IMPETUS accelerator programme, the pilot team was enabled to increase its competencies, in particular in data management, citizens’ engagement and impact assessment. The IMPETUS accelerator programme has been key in reinforcing the pilot’s chance of success. 

CER.TOSA – Video

For English subtitles, please turn on the captions for this video.