Co-Crea-Te:
Entrepreneurial Skills for the Unemployed 

The objective of Co-Crea-Te (Co-Creating Value in Public Employment Services) aims to positively affect the lives of citizens who currently find themselves adrift from the working world. They will experience an environment where their opinions are valued and taken into consideration and where they become a part of the value creating process. The pilot provides them with the necessary tools to engage in business creation projects with a view to creating scalable long-term businesses and thus provide job opportunities to others.

The main aims and objectives are thus:
1. To improve the business and other capabilities and skills of those looking for work
2. To improve the quality of training/mentoring being offered in the area of business creation
3. To create as many projects as possible with potential for constitution.

The subaims of the project are:
1. To personalize public services offered in business creation as much as possible
2. To potentially bring about systemic change in the way public services are being delivered in terms of user involvement in co-initiation, co-design, co-implementation, co-production and co-evaluation.

Schedule

Geographic area and target groups
Unemployed people who are interested in finding out more about the business world and who would like to develop a business idea in the city of Valencia

Collaborators
The Co-Crea-Te pilot is based on a process of co-design, co-implementation and co-evaluation between potential users, university, public administration and third sector organizations. Co-Crea-Te seeks to contribute to the active employment policies currently being carried out by the Local Authority of Economic and Sustainable Development (Valènciactiva), which is providing new services and infrastructures in a concerted effort to reintroduce active employment policies into the local ecosystem. It is an opportunity for universities, industries, NGOs, trade unions, cooperative associations and others to come together and create something of value. 

Pilot actions
To provide a co-working space for as many pilot projects as possible within a 2-year period.
To provide a constant mentoring and coaching service to trainees/entrepreneurs to accompany them right through every step of the business creation process.
To organise conversation of change events with upper echelon decision makers to attempt to bring about systemic change within a co-creation framework. 

Expected results
The Co-Crea-Te pilot provides an opportunity for local administration to take the lead and harness a move towards an e-governance model where citizens lie at the heart of a collaborative process. It is clear that all the elements of the social fabric that surrounds business creation needs to be involved in this process.

Lessons learned
It is necessary to find spaces, time and energy in order to continue with the good practices generated by embracing co-creation in the way CoSIE has conceptualised it. Starting a service more or less from scratch, the Co-Crea-Te movement was able to introduce all the elements of co-initiation, co-design, co-implementation, co-production and co-evaluation into the service.

We would also add the concept of co-management from our experience in Valencia, as it has formed a fundamental part of the development of the service and has engendered a more rooted sense of belonging among some users. When you add all those ingredients together and are faithful to creating a service that is built on firm pillars of co-creative practices, concepts such as the desire for mutual help, collaborative action and commmunity-based decision-making can occur organically. However, in order for this to happen, consistent catalysts of co-creation need to exist in order to bring about the constant chemical reactions that allow for such best practices to continue in the long run.

Another important lesson to learn is that, for co-creation to become an internalised, normalised practice, the effort to co-create (and yes, it can often be an effort) must be constant and consistent.

Future
Several conversations of change are planned with decision makers and policy makers at a local and regional government and across public service sectors in an attempt to ensure the future sustainability of the service. However, preliminary conversations have already taken place, in which city hall managers have expressed their desire to continue to lend a service similar to that offered by Co-Crea-Te.

CoSIE partners involved
Foundation for Employment in the City of Valencia
Polytechnic University of Valencia

Read more about the pilot from our CoSIE Blogs
A Day in the Life of a Co-creative Entrepreneur
The Value of Co-creation and the Point about Training…

 

Contact:
Michael Willoughby, mwilloughby@itaca.upv.es
Raul Linuesa, raul.linuesa@valenciactiva.es