Sharing economy can give rise to residents’ activity that increases the development and well-being of the area and creates new local services and jobs. It can also strengthen social relations between residents and their bond with the living environment. (Drake et al. 2016.) CECI (Citizen involvement in circular economy implementation), an Interreg Europe (2020) funded project managed by LAB University of Applied Sciences, emphasises the importance of citizen engagement and initiative in establishing and using the services of sharing economy.
The resident activity and sharing economy in old neighbourhoods in Lahti
At its best, the sharing economy services emerge from the initiative of the residents. One of such examples is Anttilanmäki, an old neighbourhood in Lahti. It was picked as Päijät-Häme Village of the Year 2020. The resident’s association has been actively developing various circular and sharing economy services in the area. These everyday services include a tool library, plant swapping in the vegetable garden, and a communal village house. This year’s village festival’s theme is the circular economy of everyday life. Visitors will get tips and demonstrations on how to reduce the carbon footprint in their daily lives. (Anttilanmäki 2020a; Anttilanmäki 2020b.)
The other place worth mentioning is Sopenkorpi, an old industrial area in Lahti. The local actives have been running an outdoor event space there since May 2017. This place called Kesanto (Yle 2020) is located near the old industrial train tracks in the middle of Sopenkorpi. In summer, Kesanto hosts various music and other cultural events and outdoor sports. It also offers a place for community art and urban farming. Everyone is welcome to visit and take part in creating activities. (Yle 2020.)
Communities in Päijät-Häme promoting circular economy and sustainable lifestyle
Some activities can benefit the entire region. One of the organizers of such activities is an environmental protection community, Puhdas Päijät-Häme. It aims to bring people together for the sake of a cleaner environment. The community has existed since September 2019. Its activities include organizing litter picking events and excursions for citizens and companies and educating the public about the effects of littering. The amount of litter removed from nature in Päijät-Häme in the first autumn was more than 2000 litres. (Puhdas Päijät-Häme 2020.)
The Finnish 4H Organisation is also very active in the city of Lahti. The Lahti 4H Association organizes several clubs and camps for children and youth in the area. Many of these activities promote the sustainable and responsible lifestyle. Recently the association advertised the possibility to get some alpaca and llama dung to use as a fertilizer in gardening as an exchange for fruits and vegetables for animals. (Lahden 4H-yhdistys ry 2020.)
Written by Mira Rissanen who is a business student at LAB University of Applied Sciences and is doing her internship in CECI – Citizen involvement in circular economy implementation project, and Katerina Medkova, who works as an RDI Specialist in LAB and is CECI Communication Manager.
Anttilanmäki. 2020a. Kasvipankki. [Cited 04 May 2020]. Available at: https://www.anttilanmaki.fi/kasvipankki
Anttilanmäki. 2020b. Kiertotalous. [Cited 04 May 2020]. Available at: https://www.anttilanmaki.fi/kiertotalous
Drake M., Harmaala M. & Toivola T. 2016. Sharing City: Espoo, Vantaa, Helsinki. [Cited 4 May 2020]. Available at: http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:amk-201805026113
Interreg Europe. 2020. Citizen involvement in circular economy implementation. [Cited 5 May 2020]. Available at: https://www.interregeurope.eu/ceci/
Lahden 4H-yhdistys ry. 2020. Etusivu. [Cited 5 May 2020]. Available at: https://lahti.4h.fi/
Puhdas Päijät-Häme. 2020. Puhdas Päijät-Häme. [Cited 4 May 2020]. Available at: https://www.puhdaspaijathame.fi/
Yle. 2020. Sopenkorven Kesanto: Teollisuusraiteilla kasvaa puita, ja puiden katveessa on festarit. [Cited 4 May 2020]. Available at: https://yle.fi/aihe/artikkeli/2020/02/01/lahdessa-on-raffi-puoli-joka-elaa-lahioissa-sopenkorven-kesannolla-jarjestetaan
4H. 2020. The Finnish 4H Organisation. [Cited 5 May 2020]. Available at: https://4h.fi/en/finnish-4h-organisation/
Picture 1. Mira Rissanen: The neighbourhood of Anttilanmäki offers its residents a few possibilities for using the services of sharing economy.
Picture 2. Mira Rissanen: The residents’ association of Anttilanmäki-Kittelä advertises a tool library among other things on this bulletin board.
Picture 3. Mira Rissanen: The Lahti 4H Association organizes most of its clubs in the Yli-Marola petting zoo. During the summertime, children (and everyone else) can meet domestic animals, e.g., alpacas, sheep, and pigs here.