• Andre Thelin Nielsen
4. semester, Sociologi, Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
Background
In recent years there has been a decline in the traditional Danish membership-based model amongst associations. Although it is still the most prevalent one, there has been some changes to how people engage in civic activity. From 2004 to 2012 the number of volunteers that were members of the association in which they put their time decreased from 80% to 70%. This can be seen as a movement towards a more project and activity-oriented type of volunteering, where the involved stays away from more institutionalized and formal activities. Therefore, this project seeks to evaluate whether there is a new type of organizing volunteer that are not able to be observed within the traditional research methods.
Methods
This inquiry is an explorative study of the organizational alternatives to volunteering. As such the study took place in the framework of the project “Skraldecaféen” and focused on their organizational form and what structural mechanisms that influenced their choices. To capture the participants’ type of engagement in the project there will be a focus on several types of volunteering and activism, which will further be refined by how the participants justify their engagement regarding both dumpster diving in general as well as the way they organize the project itself. Furthermore, there has been a collection of documents that relates to dumpster diving in general to get an idea of how the public views dumpster diving as an activity and how the people writing about dumpster diving justify it. The available participants of the projects were interviewed, and the focus of these interviews where how they justified their actions in the project, as well as how they organized themselves.
Results
The main factors that characterize the project is autonomy, participation based on appetence, equality and the will to create social relationships which is done through the food that is made within the project. To conceptualize this kind of engagement the author borrows a term “hverdagsaktivisme” from a local social movement organization, Sager Der Samler, which is then refined through existing theory and data. This engagement furthermore gave the participants a feeling of relevance in society, despite having been or being on the edge of society during the time of the study. Also, it was found that the project was created with root in the founders own everyday problems, where a solution to these problems eventually became an idea to help others as well.
Conclusion
The study showed that the participants in the project was able to mobilize their resources into this project by focusing on reducing their own problems and then using this solution to help others as well through the project. Furthermore, the organizational strategy of the project allowed people to participate in a way that they found fit, which results in times where the project is more energized that others. At the same time, this focus on reduced hierarchical roles led to a feeling of equality amongst the participants, which means that people feel responsible for the task they undertake. In the end this inquiry concludes that Skraldecaféen is a prime example of hverdagsaktivisme, and that using your own problems as a baseline for creating a solution for others are possible within the framework presented here.
SprogDansk
Udgivelsesdato3 sep. 2018
Antal sider71
ID: 286105732