Risk Factors
The Italian editions of the "Crowddreaming: Youth co-create Digital Culture" contest have addressed two main risk factors: the dispersion of the participants and the difficulty of teachers to operate in a cross-cultural perspective.
The percentage of teachers enrolled in the various editions of the competition who did not complete the course was around 50% on average. Beyond the physiological presence of teachers who enroll without being really motivated and do not begin the journey at all - it is not possible to intervene there -, two main reasons that influence this percentage were highlighted.
The first is linked to the adoption of the Telegram platform as a unique communication environment. Many teachers are in trouble either because they lack the ability to use a new tool or because they do not have the adequate psychological profile to communicate in an uncontrolled environment like a chat. The number of the former is constantly decreasing, as the habit of using instant messaging tools to replace e-mail spreads. This barrier is not considered, however, an impediment, but a selector that lets only the teachers interested in participating in an online community and able to do so actively slip through the sieve.
The second reason that affects the dropout rate is related to the competition for time and attention with the multiple activities in which a teacher is involved. The risk was reduced on one hand with a lively animation of the online community that tried to stimulate the pleasure of participation and on the other hand with the effort to allow as much as possible to overlap and synergize the contest with other special projects.
The second risk factor for the success of the project emerged with the adoption of the theme of European transculturality. Many teachers find difficult to recognize themselves how many elements of the cultures of other populations resident in Europe are present in their own. Many tend to think in the opposite direction and still propose to children important cultural themes shared in Europe, but born in the country of origin, Italy in the specific case of the first editions of the competition. To reduce this risk factor, active dialogue within the project chat has proved to be fundamental both with the organizers and between teachers, favored by the coopetitive rather than competitive approach.
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