Bielsko-Biała power of local activism

Community portrait of ambitious city in Poland getting familiar with doughnut.

On 14 th of December we ran a workshop “Community portrait of Bielsko Biała” inspired by the Doughnut Economics model with local communities with the participation of local authorities - a late celebration of Global Doughnat Day 2023.
Bielsko-Biała is an exceptional city in Poland with strong local activism, local pride, attractive cultural offer and open-minded people. Their ambition is to become the European Capital of Culture (now the city is in the second phase). One of the biggest Polish ecological foundations (Klub Gaja) is also based here. Jacek Bożek who is a founder of this foundation played a significant role in making this workshop happen with active participation of local administration and activists.

Community portrait of place in Bielsko Biała Poland

On this great foundation we introduced the Doughnut Economics model to this community as a starting point to imagine the future we all want to see. 

We worked on the ‘Community portrait of place’ workshop scenario with an introduction to the doughnut economics model presenting Kate Raworth’s ‘7 new ways of thinking’. There were four groups working on possible future scenarios of Bielsko-Biała city aiming to thrive within the doughnut.  Main reflections we want to share are:

  • all the lenses are interconnected what participants experienced during the workshop and found it insightful;
  • the global lenses are not intuitive at first for participants, they require more introduction, more explanation and examples to start working with;
  • “sharing, self-sufficient communities” became the light motif of the discussions;
  • proper education and rising awareness were often mentioned as important factors of change.

Community portrait of place in Bielsko Biała Poland

We see this workshop as a great starting point to incorporate new ways of thinking while preparing better, resilient future city strategies for Bielsko-Biała. This city is a great example of an ambitious community, with the spirit of good local energy and activism, that could be a leader for other cities.  

Who was present at the workshop: local and regional authorities, local activists, journalists, educators, art and cultural institutions.  The event was held in the unique surroundings of Galeria Bielska BWA.

Workshop moderators: Agata Miryn-Sienkiewicz, Karolina Długosz

Great atmosphere in Bielsko-Biała




    Dr Peter Jeffs

    Devizes, UK

    A holistic practitioner looking to build more resilience into his practice and the world.

    Cyrus Mbugua

    Nakuru, Kenya

    To learn about the Donut Economics Model and how to apply it to solve societal problems


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