12th March, Rome will shine again. The event #wakeuproma is scheduled from 9:00 to 13:00, and it is organised by LUISS Enlabs, together with the association Retake Roma, to clean up the city from vandalisms, writings on the walls, illegal posters and urban decay.

This is going to be the biggest Retake ever. Illegal stickers, posters and signs will be removed from urban structures, restoring their original status, walls will be cleaned and repainted, waste will be swept away. In short, we will retake green spaces and clean big parts of the city. All together.

The idea is to realise the opposite of a flashmob. We are now used, maybe overused, to “flash” events, temporary changes that aim at shedding a quick light on some topics. What we are going to do on Saturday is, instead, a slowmob, a social initiative that is supposed to last more than a few minutes and has long-lasting consequences in terms of respect for the environment and increased consciousness of the society, especially of young people.

Keeping our environment clean is first an educational and inclusive experience. In Japan, it is common practice that kids in kindergarten and primary schools clean their rooms before starting classes. This habit makes the place truly “theirs”: not a crossing point, rather a space of life.

Similarly, restoring urban dignity to the areas where our lives flow is fundamentally important to acquire an increased sensitivity to sustainability. Not an abstract idea for a few ecologists, rather something that should be included in everyone’s everyday habits. In LUISS, we aim at integrating this concept into the very nature of the education we deliver, as there is no effective education without a peculiar care for the repercussions it brings along.

Wakeuproma will be anything but an arrival point. Instead, we want to use this event as a start of the good revolution, the one of frugal, shared sustainability, that nurtures self-respect, and respect for others and for the environment.