Provision - A Commoning Space

The Covid-19 pandemic is a historic event with secondary effects that is changing many basic premises of modern life. Let us act swiftly to deal with the emergencies, but let us also seize the opportunity to enact long-term system improvement. We face new challenges that lack means to be solved. How can we become more efficient in tackling unexpected challenges and at the same time structurally enhance our ability to realize our human potential?

We propose Provision, a convivial tool[1], with which project ideas are being matched with enabling human and physical resources. Provision enhances our individual freedom, while enriching our relationships and interdependence. To allow users to express their meaning in action, projects and events can be proposed, favors can be requested and resources offered. Provision empowers civil initiatives that are tailored to fit the specific local reality, in order to enhance our adaptability to collectively satisfy our emergent needs. The interaction and collaboration that is manifested on our platform, will have a commoning character, connecting available means in a systematic regenerative and circular way.


Our Web-App has three features: The Commoning Space, the Project Space and Sign-up.

The Commoning Space

Proposals are visible to everyone on a commoning streamline, while for people that are signed up, proposals are adjustable as well as commentable. There are three kinds of proposals:

FavorsFavors are placed, with a concrete time-span and, if needed, location attached (they can be online favors too). For example, people who need plasma from a COVID-19 survivor, can ask for someone with the same blood type in their region or a person that needs someone to go shopping for them can call for it. Optionally, one can also attach a specific required skill/expertise, like a nurse or an electrical engineer.

ResourcesNext, resources such as materials, tools or facilities, can be offered or requested. Due to lockdown measures worldwide, a lot of materials became redundant or facilities unused, which could be, however, valuable for other projects. For example, the cotton bags intended to give away at a cancelled conference, could be sewn into masks in the conference hall by a local project. The offers or requests that are placed, contain a description of the materials or tools of interest. Moreover, one need to indicate if the resource is available for temporary or indefinite use.

Project IdeasPeople can propose project ideas, which they can directly take the lead on or leave it for others to implement. Under each idea there is a discussion ground for collectively finding solutions to problems.

The Project Space - A subspace of each project idea.

If you click on the project idea, you enter a space for only that project idea in which the human skills and physical resources (materials, tools and facilities) are specified that are needed, and nearby equivalents are recommended. If a human or physical resource would be useful, the project members could request it through a key pattern. The reverse way is also possible, users can directly offer their help or resources to the project idea. That way the project can be matched to valuable human and physical resources and through a forum-styled environment this can be advanced and implemented.


When users register they can enter their interests, skills, location and time availability. Moreover, users can chat with each other, for example about favors, resources or projects.

How can we grow from bottom-up and reach our potential ourselves as individuals and small-scale communities, while still being connected to larger institutions and share a sense of global solidarity? We design the Web-App Provision to become a systematic drive of solidary actions and will help people to satisfy their desire to help the situation in times of lockdown and hopefully afterwards.

[1] "Tools for Conviviality" -Ivan Illich. A book which described a vision of a world in which a community of users develop and maintain their own tools. Using convivial tools — a term that we extend to technologies, infrastructures, and processes for provisioning — is about enhancing our individual freedom while enriching our relationships and interdependence.



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