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How to build a democratic organization from scratch?

Sustainable Cities and Communities


Byverkstedet is concerned with city development, keeping the citizens' wishes at heart. They want to investigate how they can include more people in the decision-making processes of the city. After running a successful mini-challenge in the spring semester, they invite students to a hybrid Nano-challenge for two days to co-create an organizational structure for us to use. 

Challenge and expected impact 

Byverkstedet wants to create an organization that is open and inviting to many. To be able to do that, we need to clearly communicate to the citizens that we exist and that we want to create community through our platform. The students will be able to investigate what constitutes democracy practically and how real changes in the city can be made from the bottom and up.

Target groups 

The organization is working primarily with Stavanger as its base; however, it is connected to different initiatives in other parts of the world. For this challenge, you are helping the citizens of Stavanger to structure their platform for city development, and hopefully, impacting different cities by making available their process and work.

Expectations from students 

Students are expected to show up with an open mind and the capability to cooperate. We focus heavily on inclusion, counteracting any discriminatory practices that may arise in the process. They should share important knowledge on organizational structure and/or draw on expertise from working with society in different ways. Principles of democracy, inclusion, and sustainability are key to our organization, and any expertise in those fields is welcome. Practical knowledge is highly appreciated, as the challenge poses a practical solution to a complex and abstract problem of democracy solving in the city.


• Start date: 28.10.2021/ Finish date: 29.10.2021 (Two days workshop)
• Deadline for application: 31.08.2021
• Admission process Normal ECIU admission process
• No ECTS but Certificate will be awarded
• Special requirement: Knowledge or experience in sustainability, diversity, and inclusion would be recommended