OTELO is empowering and vitalizing the citizen base to enrich the life quality of people living in rural areas. OTELO as a whole is essentially a network of “open technology laboratories”, spaces designed for and by people to experiment, collaborate, communicate, and exchange with other community members on topics they want to take action on or simply learn more about. OTELO fosters creativity and an exchange of experience in rural parts of Austria and is linked with urban funding structures. Topics like participation, education, agriculture, social and technical innova-tions are particular focus points of this highly multidisciplinary movement. Founded in 2010, OTELO has opened 10 locations throughout Austria, and is spreading internationally with two German OTELOs currently in the start-up stage in collaboration in the regions Brandenburg and Nuremberg. OTELO has become a role model for the support of communities, creativity and the collaboration between people living in rural areas. In addition, within one year OTELO devel-oped 17 collaboration projects with industry partners and NGOs and hosted more than 150 events on regional innovations, involving more than 20.000 people in these activities.
"RurInno explores social innovations and social entrepreneurship in rural regions. As one out of six consortium partners, we strive to benefit from the access to reports and scientific state-of-the-art. This knowledge and the collaboration with partners from across Europe opens up new perspectives and strategies for fostering the potentials of rural regions. With about 21 local open laboratories, OTELO understands its role as a broker between regions and research and strives to make use from the potentials of research partners. The project aims at raising the recognition of social entrepreneurship in rural regions – an essential precondition to transform ideas and strategies into social innovations."
Martin Hollinetz, OTELO eGen, Austria
For more information visit www.oteloegen.at