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JobActEurope – social inclusion through social arts


Key words: social inequality, social inclusion, labour market integration, social innovation, art

Project duration: 01.09.2017 - 31.10.2019


Project funding:

European Union - ERASMUS+ Strategic Partnerships in the field of adult learning


Project description (short):

JobAct Europe combines theater pedagogy with social work and allows the improvement of the social situation and the labour market opportunities of disadvantaged groups in society.


Co-operation partner:

  • Projektfabrik gGmbH Germany
  • TU Dortmund University Germany
  • VIVAIO PER L'INTRAPRENDENZA Associazione Promozione Sociale Italy
  • Patchanka Società Cooperativa Sociale Italy
  • CUTS Cabinet Ursula Teubert Solutions France
  • Fondation d'Auteuil France
  • Periszkop Egyesulet Hungary
  • Szubjektív Értékek Alapítvány Hungary

Project goals:

The aim of the project is to develop new learning opportunities for disadvantage people. The project is tailored to improve the chances of various groups in need (NEET) of all ages with multiple integration issues, most often leading to long-term unemployment. The project fosters social inclusion and the employability of each participant. As integrated into the Europe 2020 strategy, employability is one of five headline targets. In order to boost social inclusion and employment, policymakers have focused on increasing employment for groups in need, especially young people, migrants, refugees and people not in education or employment (NEET). By its holistic methodology, theatre improves the Lisbon key competences of the participants significantly, namely communication in the national language, learning to learn, interpersonal, intercultural and social competences, sense of initiative and entrepreneurship as well as cultural awareness and expression. Besides it fosters self-esteem through a successful public premiere. The key competences are developed through a combination of personal development and social interaction. Especially in European countries with economic problems, high youth unemployment and a tight situation on the labour market there is a growing gap between privileged and disadvantaged groups that are often left behind. With its focus on disadvantaged people, JobAct Europe contributes to the reduction of inequality and social exclusion. The aim is to develop and establish art as an education principle in Europe, thereby creating an innovative way of knowledge transfer and empowerment that can be adopted to different target groups in need.


Project description (long):

JobAct Europe establishes a new form of education and social work – we call it SOCIAL ART. Social Art combines classical fields of social work with creative techniques developed in theatre and acting. Social Art is a further development of the JobAct theatre approach developed by the lead partner Projektfabrik Witten over the last 12 years. We believe that the art of the future will be social and that we need to develop an artistic approach to cope with the current social issues. In Social Arts the materials of the artists are not canvas, marble or stages, but social issues. The social artist will apply an artistic approach and methodology to solve these issues. Creativity, imagination and inspiration are the key skills of the social artist to overcome the obstacles.

Based on their combined experiences the partners will collaboratively develop this general approach towards the social inclusion of four different target groups in need. Work groups for each of the four social issues, each led by one partner with a special track record on this issue (e.g. entrepreneurship training for migrants) will develop Social Art solutions for the social inclusion of the target groups concerned. Thus, in the end, new project formats to support socially excluded groups in need are developed. During the project development process for the new formats, great emphasizes is put on the scalability and ‘trainability’ of the new approaches. One-week train-the-trainer courses are developed, to train pedagogues and theatre practitioners the new methodology. During this project four teaching and training activities will be conducted, one for each social issue. We plan to train 20 trainers per training, thus summing up to 80 trainers total acquiring the new methodology.

The project consortium seeks to implement the new formats in the daily operations of the partners and thus scale the new approaches of social work to all four countries. Based on the trainings pilot projects are launched. Based on the combination of social work and theatre training, participants of the pilot projects will be empowered, provided with the skills and competencies they lack, and supported to find their way (back) into the labor market.

A tool set is developed, summarizing the new approach of Social Arts, offering strategies and methods for the four target groups concerned, dealing with qualifications of the social artist and frame conditions to run these new formats and giving a best practice collection about the four target group adaptions. Potential funding strategies are included, because their development marks a crucial step for the successful scaling of the new approach on a European level. The partner selection is diverse by size and scope of the organizations, ranging from freelancers to an international organization. It is also diverse by the field of expertise combining partners form theatre and acting, social work, business consulting and innovation management, fundraising and project management, entrepreneurship training and academia. Each partner adds a special expertise towards the goal to develop sustainable and realistic, new approaches for the social inclusion of disadvantaged groups.

Main results of the project are the tool set that can be used by trainers to carry out social art projects with different target groups, by multipliers to learn about the principle and its fields of application and a European Network that includes organizations and stakeholders who share the vision of making art an education principle. With the help of the project, individual job chances for disadvantaged groups are improved verifiably and institutions who work with these groups are given the opportunity to expand their curricula by an effective approach. By providing a tool set to enable adaption of the approach to individual purposes, the education principle can be used in various fields of action.



This link will lead you to the homepage of JobAct Europe 


Project leadership

Foto von Kerstin Guhlemann Kerstin Guhlemann,

Telephone: +49 231 755-90235


Gudrun Brieden,

Telephone: +49 231 755-90210