HOW IT ALL BEGAN
POC21 is a proof of concept for a sustainable tomorrow, enabled by a new breed of open, low-resource products that are “sexy like Apple, but open like Wikipedia”. It is made possible by the combined expertises and networks of OuiShare (Paris) and OpenState (Berlin)
builds the prototypes and new narratives of a truly sustainable lifestyle. In their former life as campaign consultants and designers, the team has gathered over 10 years of experience in social change communications for Amnesty International, WWF, Ben & Jerry’s, the German Green Party or Wikipedia.
is a think-tank, do-tank and global community of pioneers building a collaborative and open source society. Founded in 2012 as a non-profit, OuiShare has 20 local chapters in Europe, Latin America and North Africa, and organizes OuiShare Fest: an annual conference uniting 1000 collaborative pioneers in Paris.
It’s been back on a boat restaurant in the Berlin summer of 2011 when Dominik and Daniel discussed the dire threat of climate change and the total lack of a sufficient societal response. A weekend later they met Simon at a common friends birthday party, shared their frustration and the idea was born: Let´s unite our skills and network and come up with the best possible answer to the problem, no matter what it takes. And it should take us a while…
Meanwhile, Ben and Justyna had been bootstrapping the global OuiShare community, while exploring the potential of distributed fabrication, open source and the maker movement to open the way to a post-industrial, sustainable productive system, dreaming of organizing something even bigger than OuiShare Fest, that would produce tangible solutions to the world’s most pressing issues.
Justyna had also been developing the vision for a marketplace of open source home products with the Wikihouse Foundation, and building up the digital fabrication network through FabJams.
In 2012, Ben met Dominik in Berlin through a common friend, who had joined Palomar5: the very first innovation camp that Dominik had organized in 2009 in Berlin.
Both of them talked for hours about the innovation camp concept, and how it could be used to address the challenges of climate change and resource depletion. Open State was already developing the concept in Germany, and both agreed to find out a way to make such an event happen in France, someday.
Then Ben invited Dominik to OuiShare Fest 2014 to present the idea: unite open-source pioneers in a long-term innovation format to accelerate and promote a new breed of open and sustainable products.
The message stuck and since that day the POC21 project developed high-speed: being a mere idea in the beginning, our concept grew stronger. Justyna just found the perfect place to make our dream come true: a beautiful, ancient french castle located in Millemont, only 45 min from Paris center. More and more people from our networks got excited about it and they opened doors to funders and strategic partners - we felt the energy rising on all sides.
Finally, the project applications to the camp came in and the quality and diversity of those people got us really, really excited. There are only a few weeks left to go until POC21 gets real: castle doors open, makers from around the world united. We hope, you´ll join us on this fantastic ride!