Free culture: collaboration in digital citizenship conferences in Geneva and Lausanne area

Foundation organized two multiplier events to contribute to the dissemination and exploitation of Open-AE project results. First one took place in Geneve on 29 September 2020 and the second in Lausanne area (Grandvaux) on 31 October 2020. Two events were necessary because interests for participation was higher than COVID-19 restrictions for face-to-face events allowed.

The event in Geneva was organized by Foundation and the FASe – Geneva Foundation for Sociocultural Animation invited local trainers, facilitators and other stakeholders and local agents to an event that allowed discussions and exchanges around the culture of Free. Specifically, this event made an attempt to answer to: How can it strengthen collaboration, the pooling of resources and digital citizenship?

Athanasios Priftis presented the results of the Open-AE project, with an emphasis on our collaborative tools and methods (academy and toolkit), as well as project’s recommendations for educators / facilitators. The event was followed by representatives of the public administration including the Service Media Schools – SEM – DIP – State of Geneva, municipalities and members of the World Economic Forum.

Florence Devouard, former president of the Wikimedia Foundation and now manages the Wikipedia encyclopedia, led this conference. She joined in video conference mode. Florence gave us instructions and feedback for the practical activities of online collaboration. Athanasios Priftis facilitated the workshop and the exchanges between the participants.

The Yorg Foundation and its network of experts have as mission the promotion of open and free technologies and educational resources (OER). That is why for this Multiplier Event YORG collaborated with FASe, a local swiss partner. FASe is a public law partnership foundation that promotes and strengthens social cohesion in the canton of Geneva. It develops actions for, by and with all types of population. 

This event was aimed at facilitators, social workers and trainers working in the education sector, formal or non-formal, but also adolescents and young adults. The goal of this event was not only to present the results and recommendations of the OPEN AE projects but also to strengthen the culture and digital skills of participants, through collaboration, pooling of resources and digital citizenship.

This event allowed YORG to:

  • Present and discuss the results of the Open-AE project results (Curriculum, Toolkit, Piloting report and Guidelines for transferability)
  • Approach the themes of “digital citizenship” and the culture of Free Software, in relation to Wikipedia, from three angles: generic, “how to fight against fake news?”, data protection oriented, “what uses and consequences?”, health focus, “digital technology: remedy and / or poison?”

The second had the same aim and was moderated by Théo Bondolfi (Social Entrepreneur) and Athanasios Priftis and it also counted with the contribution of Henri Poulain , one of the founders of Datagueule (France 4 television program and web series). The event took place in La Smala Living Lab headquarters, an ecovillage in Grandvaux. This was a good moment to strengthen the local partnership between Yorg and La Smala Livinglab, a strong stakeholder on the French speaking Switzerland with robust experience with Open and Free Software Culture and Floss tools as well as online collaboration and cooperation. 

Both events were open to everyone, but had a special interest for people who regularly transmit, through their activity, messages and their knowledge: teachers and trainers, actors in the fields of health, politics, the environment and culture, etc. Participants included environmental trainers, eco community and cooperative members, as well as Living Lab facilitators. 

Text and images: Foundation

Open-AE multiplier event in Italy

The multiplier event held in October 2020 in Foligno (Italy) was the opportunity to share the results of the Open-AE project and create meaningful connections with relevant stakeholders in the field of digital skills, adult education and FLOSS culture.

The event was held on the first of October 2020 at the DigiPass hub in Foligno which is based next to CSF premises. During the extraordinary circumstances caused by Covid-19, the event was held in a blended and spread format: the main event was organized in presence in Foligno and streamed online. At the same time, other DigiPass hubs organized the simultaneous events in their centers and streamed the main events. This allowed to have smaller events in presence with the facilitation of DigiPass staff.

At the main event organized in Foligno, several stakeholders participated and took part in the discussion both online and in presence. Among the external speakers the following people took part in the discussion:

  • Representatives from the Umbria Region
  • Responsible for the Digital Agenda at regional level
  • Coordinator of DigiPass initiative
  • Representative of the Ministry for Innovation and responsible for the initiative Repubblica Digitale
  • Stakeholders
  • E-facilitators and adult education trainers

After an initial presentation of the DigiPass and Repubblica Digitale initiatives, Luca Pagliaricci introduced the Open-AE project’s results to the audience. The synergies between the Open-AE projects and the FLOSS approach were deeply highlighted during the event especially with regards to public and open initiative that would very much benefit from it.

Despite the limitations due to the Covid-19 emergency, no major deviations were reported in the organization and implementation of the event. To cope with the limitations, different and simultaneous events, online and in presence, were organized in the region thanks to the DigiPass network and its hubs thus avoiding great gathering of people and increasing the impact reaching a wider remote public.


Digital skills and competences are increasingly pegged to proprietary software solutions. While Free Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS) technologies are meant to be open and are freely accessible, most FLOSS users already have some competences in licensing and ownership when making the decision to use FLOSS. New users with low skills are often intimidated or insecure with their own capacities to use open source technologies, and thus may choose to use proprietary options because some brands are more associated with skills.

The OPEN-AE project aims to bridge this gap and promote practices and tools to make open culture and free software more accessible for new users. OPEN-AE wants to support European digital competence centres in becoming innovative trainings hubs, capable of catching up with the latest developments in digital economy and teaching digital skills in an accessible way to their specific target groups.

The OPEN-AE project project developed and tested:

  • A curriculum training scheme on open source technologies addressed to educators working in non-formal adult education, mapped on the DigCompEdu Framework.
  • An online toolkit for educators in five languages (EN, NL, FR, IT, ES) by adapting open educational resources already available. It serves as guidance for adult education strategies, tools and approaches for developing digital skills training.
  • A modular blended course of 60 hours in open source technologies and pilot it with 40 educators from four countries to improve their knowledge of open digital learning technology, tools, platforms and using them.
  • Additionally, project partners produced guidelines for transferability and upscaling of project results and recommendations for non-formal education providers and policy makers.

The project and experiences of partners, trainers and learners will be presented at an online conference on Tuesday 20 October 2020 from 15:00 – 18:00 by the Consortium. In addition, invited guest speakers will address the project’s themes from different angles.

Registration for the event is mandatory. REGISTER HERE!


Renato Sabbadini, CEO, ALL DIGITAL

15:00-15:10 | Welcome

15:10-16:30 | Panel debate: The use of free and libre (FLOSS) technologies in non-formal adult education

Free Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS) technologies are becoming increasingly integrated in various sectors and operations. While OPEN-AE project focused on developing tools to integrate FLOSS technology and culture in the non-formal adult education sector, there are many other areas where it is being utilized. The panel debate will offer an insight to transferability and good practice examples of FLOSS utilisation and present latest policy developments in the field.


  • Véronique Guisen, CABAN DIBAC, Digital Public Space, Director of the “Saint-Gilles Web Workshops”,
  • Francesc Rambla, Centre de Telecomunicacions i Tecnologies de la Informació (CTTI), Consultant
  • Frédéric Colignon, Popular Digital University, Brussels Linux User Group (BxLUG) and member of ABELLI
  • Luca Pagliaricci, OPEN AE project, Centro Studi Citta de Foligno, Project Manager and Consultant

Moderator: Leonor Afonso (

16:30-16:45 | Coffee Break 

16:45-17:40 | Presentation of the OPEN-AE project results, partners’ experiences and future perspective

Trainees who participated in the OPEN-AE piloting will, together with representatives of the project’s partner organisations (Florian Ruymen – MAKS vzw, Esther Subias – Colectic, Borut Cink – ALL DIGITAL and Thanasis Priftis – Foundation present project results (OPEN-AE Toolkit and Online platform), piloting experiences from Belgium, Italy, Spain and Switzerland and future perspectives for the developed methodology and tools.

17:40 – 17:45 | Closing of the event

Registration for the event is mandatory. REGISTER HERE!