Citizenship and Innovation in Geographic Education

The Institute of Geography and Spatial Planning of the University of Lisbon, in collaboration with Esri Portugal, promotes for the fifth consecutive year the Project “We Propose! Citizenship and Innovation in Geographical Education”. The “We Proposed!” The project aims to promote an effective local territorial citizenship, in a perspective of governance and sustainability. It is currently the major national project within the scope of Geography and mobilises schools throughout the country. In 2014, it mobilised 1400 students and professors of Geography from all over the country and counts on the support of the Ministry of Education and Science, through the Directorate General of Education. Currently, the Project is being implemented in Tocantins / Brazil. It is addressed primarily to students and professors of Geography of Secondary Education, generally of the 11th year, but also counts on the participation of students in the 12th grade and 10th grade, as well as other levels and professional courses.

The Project mobilises the 11th Year Case Study to identify local problems and submit proposals for resolution by students. At the same time, it intends to promote a partnership between universities, schools, municipalities, companies and associations, with which an attempt is made to establish a cooperation protocol. At the beginning of the school year, after a first phase of awareness raising on citizenship issues and local challenges, students identify in small groups problems that are significant to them in the school and home area – the recovery of a building Abandoned to the change of the course of a career of public transport, to the installation of leisure equipment in a public space or to the creation of a local tourist route, to give some examples. Whenever possible, students and teachers have a meeting with City Council technicians, who give them the main guidelines and concerns of the Municipal Master Plan (also addressed in the 11th year), which helps to frame the problem they are studying. The students then carry out a small research work on the problem they have selected and prepared a proposal (s) for solving it. Esri Portugal provides the cartographic support to the students.

On April 26, 2016, the National Seminar is held at the University of Lisbon, where young people from all participating schools present their proposals and some awards and certificates of participation are awarded. The dissemination of these proposals continues with the community, often with the local authority and some of them have been taken over by local authorities. The application period for the Schools for 2017/18 runs from July 8 to 31 and from September 1 to 30, with 50 schools being admitted. The application is made on the IGOT-Ul website at