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Creativity, The Connected Economy and Offenders
Date du début: 1 sept. 2015, Date de fin: 31 août 2017 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

European Economy/Society is in a period of rapid change a "Great Reset" - transition from the Industrial Economy to Connected Economy which is about exploration, risk-taking, personal production, networking, making connections, active participation. At the heart of this new emerging connected economy is creativity. For offenders/ex-offenders to embrace this new economy they need to develop their creative capabilities/understand how to make positive connections to increase their Social Capital. Human creativity is endless, but for ex-offenders the words “No!” and “it will never work” dominate. Creativity allows one to learn about ourselves, develop fullest potential, survive in an ever changing world, with many mutually reinforcing strands supporting resettlement. Creative senses need to be ignited, becoming aware ones environment, wider community, thus developing empowerment in society, greater self-awareness; opening a new world of opportunities and engaging in learning. Creativity is a way of sharing meaningful things/ ideas, unlocking innovative capacity. The project partnership is diverse specialist organisations in the criminal justice system from four EU member states (Latvia, Lithuania, Portugal and the UK), who are working together to develop an innovative approach to allow for offenders to develop within the Connected Economy, "excavate buried dreams", resolve fear/learned helplessness to develop positive goals. Understanding the importance of connection, individuals learn the seemingly complex process which allows the swap of information/expectation/culture, learning to open up to others, which requires humanity/generosity. Learning to share creativity through the Connection Economy means that the individual needs to give up control over the outcome, to learn to work in partnership. Through giving up control over the outcome of ones interactions, allows others to make connections. Friends bring more friends, reputation allows the chance to build a better reputation, access to information encourages seeking more information, making learning exciting, cross generational, rewarding, helping the offender ‘Learn to learn’. As connections multiply, they increase in value as does social capital. The project recognise the dynamics/potential of the Connected Economy and how by developing creativity linked to this economy we stimulate innovation, openness, diversity, and a new safety net for the truly disadvantage in society. The project is developing a Manual of approaches, tools and methodology to offenders and ex-offenders to develop their creativity and access the connected economy. The training materials and tools are about: Igniting creativity; Learning to share, trust, connect; Understanding how the connected economy works (tools and rules); How to develop contacts, networks, social capital; Progression towards employability; Become a non offending EU citizen resilient in a complex society. Project partners are testing these new approaches, tools and methodology on 40 offenders and ex-offenders, using 13 as indepth case studies linked to a Social Return on Investment methodology to explore the impact the projects concepts can make. The evaluation of the project will be captured in the 'Study of Lessons learned' which will support evidence based policy making in the Criminal Justice System around these new learning approaches linking creativity to the Connected Economy. During 2017 a road show of dissemination conferences will be held across the EU in Latvia, Lithuania, Portugal and the UK to engage policy makers and practitioners working in the criminal justice system into the benefits and good practice of the projects concepts and tools. Interested organisations and individuals can join the project discussions via the projects social media platforms to learn more and share their own ideas. Project results are clearly linked and committed with Europe 2020 strategy and European policies to fight poverty and social exclusion and results grounded on a shared vision, tools and methodologies that will provide lessons to be learned and an opportunity to engage some of societies hardest to reach individuals. The Creativity in the Connected Economy is about helping those most at risk in our modern complex society, and through the development of innovative approaches to help this individuals to engage into the labour market/employment and to create a thirst for more learning. By learning to share and connect these individuals are developing a valuable social capital, which will help them in months and years to come, making society a safer place and helping those from prison or the courts to create full and positive futures.



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