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GRADE – COST Action CA21141

Grassroots of Digital Europe


At a time when academics and citizens are increasingly concerned with surveillance capitalism, Europe takes on a leadership role in the global transformation towards a digital future that treats users fairly. It fosters initiatives such as the right to repair, advances privacy and security policies such as the GDPR, and highlights citizens’ digital rights.

The emergence of digital rights and citizenship in the past two decades opens new avenues of politicization in technological realms and suggests new kinds of political subjectivities.

However, the historical precedents of these developments have been little studied. In the 1980s and 1990s, enthusiasts across Europe started to take part in grassroots cultures of creative computing, as well as the participatory use of computers for experimentation, self-expression, or activism.

To proactively engage in the current technological transformation and successfully implement the values of participation, social inclusion, and bottom-up innovation in today’s technology policy, we need to understand these historical developments.

GRADE aims to build a robust and diverse network of researchers from across Europe who will integrate existing knowledge and work on new transnational projects. 


The Action is an open, interdisciplinary and growing network welcoming academics, practitioners and relevant stakeholders to contribute to the activities of the grade work plan.

Working Groups


Digital Grassroots Across Europe

WG1 conducts comparative transnational research on creative computing cultures in Europe.

Institutionalizing Digital Grassroots

WG2 is focused on the interactions between grassroots creative computing movements and official institutions - both at national and pan-European levels.

Digital Grassroots as European Cultural Heritage

WG3 explores ways of preserving creative computing as (in)tangible digital heritage.