Sarantaporo Community Network

Sarantaporo is an agricultural and husbandry region in North Greece that the state largely ignores. High levels of out-migration from the area are matched by low levels of public services and Internet connection. In an attempt to improve their situation, a group of people came together in 2010 to form a community wireless network that could connect Sarantaporo with other villages and with the rest of the world.

Attention. The guys from the website said: Everybody who has a laptop or notebook, take it and bring it to the square.


# Aspirational Goals

The community aims to be use its wireless network as a catalyst for residents in the region to reorganize themselves as cooperatives, "[re]enliven their economy and make it sustainable, more extroverted and independent of state and corporate control." They seek to build bridges between a high-tech wireless community network and the real-life challenges of a rural community.


# Legal Status & Location

Sarantaporo is a Greek nonprofit organization legally registered under the name "amke." It mostly serves remote villages, especially Sarantaporo, close to Ellassona, Greece. Europe

# When did they start?

The network was started in 2010 by a few young men who were not living in the villages but had origins there.


# How do they work?


The main goal of Sarantaporo is to connect people via a wireless, community-governed network that neither the market nor the State has seen fit to provide so far. "The guys from the website" who instigated the project invited villagers with digital devices to look to them as production facilitators. The organizers have "made space for the youth in the village and promoted cooperation among the associations of the island," as one villager said. The project has "given people a sense of belonging, of being informed, of getting access to opportunities." Sarantaporo has not just been a one-way channel of information, but a communication channel that connects communities. Participation is also encouraged through community wifi workshops.

# How are they financed?

A considerable amount of money has been invested for infrastructure over the years, probably through European funded projects. But the Sarantaporo project started without any official funding beyond technical infrastructure systems donated by the FLOSS [Free/Libre Open Source Software] community in Greece.


Participants in the Sarantaporo network engage in complex collaborative practices using digital tools in hybrid environment. [DB: hybrid environment in this instance means....??]

- Cultivate Shared Purpose & Values. It took a lot of time and conflict for the organizers of Sarantaporo to realize that sharing the purpose and the core ideas of the project would be the key to its success. After six years, deliberate efforts were made to cultivate shared purpose & values to solve problems.

For instance, at the beginning of the project, the network had maintenance problems which the organizers took care of. At a certain point, they had to ask the community to pay for these services. It was a relatively small amount but the communities objected to paying because the project had been introduced to them as a "free service." So it became clear that Sarantaporo needed to explain what a community-driven network really means. In other words, it was not just about free internet access. The idea of a mutual support network had not been well-communicated, nor had people realized that a community governance network would be needed.

To deal with these issues, the group hosted a series of community workshops with the help of Nethood and other organizations. The workshops explained how networks work and invited multilayered discussions that really addressed the concerns of the community. - Ensure Fair Abundance. The created management system has some kind of automatization, a kind of FAQ logic to make problem-solving easier and strive for more self-regulation of the management system. One of the problems that might arise is that it is not really a meshed network, it is expanding nodes of the networks and might reach its limits of permormativity. --> DAVID DISCUSS THIS DIMENSION

- Strengthen the Nested-I It didn't have this effect to everyone but clearly to quite a few people. It connects people into new formal coalitions, and people feel proud about what they do through the network. - Decouple Giving & Taking - Practice Gentle Reciprocity - Honor Care - Deepen Interdependency on Nature - Trust Situated Knowing & Be Creatively Adaptive - Preserve Relationships in Addressing Conflicts - Reflect on Your Peer-Governance

# Peer Governance in the Commons

- Separate Commons & Commerce - Develop Shared Purpose & Values. It was a shared goal by those who started the project but this goal and the core ideas (like what is a community network all about) was not shared with the community during the first years. - Assure Commoners' Consent in Decisionmaking - Set Semi-Permeable Boundaries - Relationalize Property - Ritualize Togetherness - Share Knowledge Often & Widely - Honor Transparency in a Sphere of Trust - [Respect Human Dimensions] - Direct Capital to Commons Provisioning - Self-Monitor, Mediate & Sanction There was at the beginning an idea of - we bring something good to the community and those who begann the project thought it should simply be used. It took a while for people to unterstand that "this project cannot work without my/our active envolvement"


# How does Provisioning through commons occur?


Describe what is being produced and how in this Commons. Then, assess which elements of Provisioning through Commons are present? Be as concrete as possible, even storytelling might fit!

ontological ground and political culture

# Inner Kernel

Proceed the same way selecting from the following dimensions


# Realms of Commoning

delete those which don't apply; if you are missing a top-level-tag; put a note in [Notes to Silke]


# Sources

Interview with Natalia-Rozalia Avlona, Thessaloniki, September 15, 2016

# See also


# Additional Notes

add whatever information or idea might be useful for the future, below if needed another "foto transporter"