Gipuzkoa Deep Demo

ALC analyzes more than 200 initiatives in the mapping process of Etorkizuna Eraikiz

Agirre Lehendakaria Center has been working for the last few years in the Etorkizuna Eraikiz initiative developed by the Provincial Council of Gipuzkoa. Within this framework, Gipuzkoa wants to face the challenges ahead of us and Gipuzkoa presents itself as a space for advanced experimentation in two of the main missions that have been identified: food and mobility.

In these two missions, two agents guide the process: Idom for the mobility mission and AZTI for the food mission.

In order to contribute to the work being carried out by these two agents, ALC has developed a mapping process for both missions.

Here we show the results of this analysis.


Starting point: the need for a developmental evaluation approach

Innovation processes in complex challenges pose difficulties for more traditional evaluation systems. Rather than working with clearly defined objectives, social innovation aims to create new relationships between stakeholders, develop new networks of actors, promote the development of new interconnected prototypes and propose new ways of using existing networks and initiatives.

For these tasks, this type of process requires the incorporation of an evolutionary evaluation layer that allows internal and external changes and adjustments to be adapted in the experimentation process in real time, based on the perceptions and obstacles identified among the different agents involved in the process.

In contrast to the traditional approach of monitoring and evaluation systems, evolutionary evaluation is a process of analysis, dialogue and reflection that allows teams to understand what their intervention is achieving in real time and what are the keys that are enabling or preventing the desired change.

The objective of this evaluation to analyze Gipuzkoa as a space of advanced experimentation and to reflect on what the work and the specific process of Etorkizuna Eraikiz missions contribute to it within the framework of this territorial development is to analyze in real time whether the progress in the implementation of the project corresponds to the strategic objectives of the intervention or whether alternatives have been generated that have not been previously taken into account.


This approach allows us to develop an independent and robust measurement system within Etorkizuna Eraikiz. This methodology is developed within the five elements described below:

ALC-driven evolutionary assessment approach

(1) Systemic mapping

(2) Listening and analysis of narratives

(3) Collective interpretation or contrast of the analysis of narratives

(4) Participatory co-creation and scaling processes


Each of these phases or work elements is interconnected and feeds into each other as the process progresses. This work approach is not a linear process in which experimentation from a traditional project management logic is applied as the phases previously foreseen in a schedule occur. The approach developed by ALC for the implementation of evolutionary assessment aims to build a dynamic management model that adapts to the needs encountered in the innovation process.

The evolutionary assessment process does not aim to control the assessment process and isolate the assessment elements in order to simplify the existing complexity. The evolutionary evaluation seeks to have the capacity to give an immediate response to what happens in the context and does not try to have a total control of the process.

In the case of the experimental project, the strategic objective is usually learning and knowledge transfer. In this sense, the mission processes aim to become a space for experimentation within the context of Etorkizuna Eraikiz. It is therefore necessary to test new solutions, experiment, create shared learning processes and obtain solid evidence and recommendations. Ultimately, the evidence on this learning process and its conversion into a "learning place" of what could work is intended to facilitate the process of evolutionary missions and evaluations, as well as the analysis matrix designed by ALC that underpins it.

Experimentation and innovation projects must therefore build new management models that are more open and adaptable than the traditional ones. Evolutionary evaluation proposes a working approach in which it aims to go beyond traditional project-based logic frameworks and orient the initiative towards a portfolio management model in which initiatives are interconnected and synergies between them can be exploited. This portfolio of initiatives includes conventional projects, ideas or initiatives, pilot tests or more innovative and experimental prototypes. It is imperative that this portfolio strategy is aligned with the perceptions of society so that the proposed solutions respond to the demands, challenges and opportunities heard in the community.

Mapping process and system

ALC has developed a mapping process in both missions in order to contribute to both Idom's mobility mission and AZTI's food mission. ALC has identified them divided into five levels and responding to the different programmatic areas of each mission. There are 89 initiatives related to the food mission and 124 related to mobility, for a total of 213 initiatives identified.

All the information is collected in an analysis matrix to visualize all the initiatives.


System mapping is a process that consists of identifying and visualizing the key initiatives and agents that exist in a territory and that are related to the issue being addressed. In order to elaborate a detailed system map, all existing initiatives are shown at five levels of intervention:

  1. community initiatives
  2. Small and medium-scale initiatives
  3. Large-scale public-private partnerships
  4. redesign of public services
  5. new regulations


What is the purpose of systemic mapping?

A complete systemic mapping allows us to identify how existing actions relate (or not) to each other, identify the gap between initiatives and people's needs, and present possible intervention possibilities.

By positioning the mapping in a structured portfolio it is possible to identify the nodes and leverage points, i.e. the steps in the system where targeted actions can produce significant and lasting improvements.

It is important to note that the map is dynamic and changes over time, adapting to new situations and system updates. 

As mentioned above, this mapping process developed by LAC in both missions has been analyzed at five levels and identified in response to the different programmatic areas of each mission.


A total of 213 initiatives have been identified: 89 related to the food mission and 124 related to mobility.

ALC has created a series of visualizations to analyze how the food and mobility ecosystems are performing.

Bringing these initiatives to a portfolio visualization can be interesting to analyze how the prototypes worked on both in the participatory sessions and in the experimentation teams within the missions are combined with the existing ecosystem.

Below is a visualization based on the food mission with mapped initials and another based on the programmatic areas:


In these visualizations, it is possible to analyze the number of initiatives that are aligned with each programmatic area and the level at which each initiative falls: community action, small or medium scale, large scale, regulatory change or a public service.

Taking into account the existing contrasts in these visualizations, the objective is to make a series of collective interpretations that allow us to jointly understand our performance as ecosystems and to develop shared narratives and create new solutions.

ALC is also developing together with the Provincial Council of Gipuzkoa a digital tool to visualize this systemic mapping and the connections between initiatives. This tool will be used to identify the different levels of connection between agents and initiatives and to define to what extent it is responding to the different perceptions gathered in the listening process through different visualizations.