The Spaces Between Us
Are we growing closer together or farther apart? It has been 18 years since Robert Putnam posited in Bowling Alone that our social fabric was fraying, and by some measures that seems to be continuing. For example, did you know that Britain just established a Minister for Loneliness? Or that the average American spends barely 30 minutes a day on any kind of socializing with other adults?
For Convene, the work of connecting is more urgent than ever. We need to re-establish the bridges that span the spaces between us: as individuals to combat loneliness and separation, as communities to collectively tackle our pressing issues, and with the places we live to cultivate a sense of belonging.
Convene’s journey has revealed that community engagement in design, planning and art-making can be powerfully leveraged to forge connecting bonds between us. By increasing our participation in inclusive and decisive public process, we can reawaken our civic hearts and open up the paths of social renewal.