Arantzazulab: Building the Basque co-creation ecosystem


In 2021 we launched the co-creation ecosystem. Arantzazulab is building, together with different stakeholders in the Basque Country, a space to connect knowledge and create new ways of doing. Currently, two experiments are already underway, and on 13th of July we will hold the fourth gathering of the co-creation ecosystem. 


It was in July 2021 that we launched the co-creation ecosystem. Under the social innovation approach promoted by Arantzazulab (Collaborative Governance and Innovation in Governance for transformation) the co-creation ecosystem has a double objective:  

  1. To connect co-creation spaces, knowledge and stakeholders in the Basque Country to connect knowledge, share resources and discuss lessons learned together.
  2. To facilitate spaces for experimentation in order to promote creativity and generate new knowledge.


Between 2021 and 2022, different actions have been carried out: 3 working sessions have been organised, the Co-Creation Experiments Competition has been promoted and two experiments have been set up which have arisen from the competition. 



In the first meeting, we worked on the objective of the ecosystem, the theory of change, the roles of the participants, as well as key definitions. The following report captures the above-mentioned information.  

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In the second working session, we reflected on and captured knowledge about the structural elements of co-creation. The issues that were explored in depth are available in this report. We also presented the Co-Creation Experiment Competition.  

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Based on the strategic axes of the approach to social innovation promoted by Arantzazulab – innovation in collaborative governance and governance for transformation – the Co-Creation Experiments Competition, which opened in October, aims to create new knowledge and new ways of doing through bold experiments in collaboration between different stakeholders. In turn, the competition ultimately aims to contribute to the vision of the co-creation ecosystem: the co-creation of the public agenda between citizens, organised society and public institutions. 


Twelve proposals were received and two were selected 

  • Galdera Ikurrak: Based on open exploration and co-creation, this project aims to provide young people with a space for reflection, exploration and connection with their surroundings. Focusing on wellbeing and mental health, they are exploring innovative perspectives with both children and young people. In short, they are working and reflecting on co-creation on two levels: on the one hand, with young people and, on the other, among the agents who are implementing the project. The promoters of the experiment are Farapi and Medialab Tabakalera.
  • Galdakao 2030: Taking into account the main challenges of Galdakao (Bizkaia), they are developing specific missions and co-creation spaces to explore solutions to these challenges. They are also using these spaces to experiment with new forms of participation. The promoters of this experiment are Galdakao Town Council, Maraka, Julen Mendoza consulting and Apitropik.


In March 2022, the third working session of the co-creation ecosystem was held, in which the groups promoting the winning experiments presented their work and facilitated activities to reflect on them. In addition, all the groups participating in the competition presented their projects and we discussed the possibilities of carrying them out. Finally, we reflected on the elements we would like to include in an ecosystem manifesto. All the information we worked on was collected in this document.  

The ecosystem has focused on connecting local knowledge, as well as on generating new knowledge. And all of this, we are exploring ways to enrich it through approaches from outside the ecosystem. In the three previous sessions we have been in contact with international experts in the field, such as Chris Vanstone and Alazne Alberdi, representatives of The Australian Centre for Social Innovation (Australia); Stephen Vincent from La 27e region (France) and Jayne Engle. (Canada).  

With the aim of sharing and connecting the knowledge that it is being generated in this ecosystem, a new session will be held on the 13th of July. Prior to the meeting, each ongoing experiment’s group has been asked to capture in a text the lessons learned and questions they are exploring. In the coming weeks we will share the interesting readings in blog format, stay tuned!

  • Galdera Ikurrak – Young people as subjects of participation in the process.  
  • Galdakao 2030 – Who are our allies and how can we work with a shared vision.  


Thanks to all the people who participate in the construction of this ecosystem! Agirre Lehendakaria Center, Apitropik, Artelan, Colaborabora, DOT, Elhuyar, Emun, Farapi, Ibatuz, Impact Hub, Maraka, Medialab Tabakalera, Tipi, Conexiones improbables, Urbanbat, Debagoiena 2030, Txatxilipurdi, Arabako Ikastolen Elkartea, Be&Lab, Arteman, Pez estudio, Julen Mendoza aholkularitza, Egia aholkularitza, Gipuzkoako Foru Aldundia, Adinberri, Badalab. And to all of you who are willing to continuously enrich the contents along the way!   

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If you are interested in being part of the co-creation ecosystem, you can contact us at: