Social laboratories for culture and entrepreneurship (LASO) in Colombia
Find out more about this innovative practice
The Social Laboratories of Culture and Entrepreneurship (LASO, in Spanish initials) is a program intended to encourage and support the creation and consolidation of collaborative networks by young people for the creation, production and commercialization of cultural content using new technologies. The program comprises five components: Training, Infrastructure, Sustainability, Participation and Distribution.
By offering local training in cultural entrepreneurship, enhancing the creative and productive capacity of local cultural professionals, supporting the development and viability of new creative projects and facilitating access to funding, the LASO Local Committees have a direct impact on the social and economic development of the territories where they are located. Moreover, they promote strategic partnerships with other networks fostering collaborative work.
The LASO Local Committees also contribute to strengthening the process of decentralized cultural governance. Growing steadily since its launch in 2012, the LASO program is present in 18 municipalities around the country, where Cultural Content Production Centers (CPCC) are located thus supporting regional equity in the distribution of cultural resources within the country. Almost 500 productive units were created to support and provide training to about 4000 young artists. A further 400 participants benefited of support schemes to participate in business roundtables, festivals and cultural markets.
With this initiative, Colombia implements innovative strategies to integrate culture in sustainable development frameworks in line with Goal 3 of the Convention and advances the realization of SDGs 4, 8 and 9. By fostering technical and vocational training and providing infrastructures supporting the cultural value chain through the whole country, LASO contributes to increasing the number of youth who have relevant skills for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship (Target 4.4), encourages the formalization and growth of cultural micro and SMMEs (Target 8.3) and develops quality, reliable, and sustainable infrastructure to support economic development and human well-being (Target 9.1).
The LASO Project is a networked platform where young people can build collaborative networks for the creation, management and commercialization of cultural content with the purpose of making their life projects viable and thus contributing to social transformation.
The LASO project has been present in 18 municipalities throughout the country through cultural content production centers (CPCC).
It has provided training in audio production to about 4,000 young people since 2012. Through this initiative, the beneficiaries of the Project have created 494 productive units, with further participation of around 400 beneficiaries in circulation and commercial spaces such as business roundtables, festivals and cultural markets.
Its components are:
• Granting of equipment for audio production studies.
• Training in audio production.
• Construction of collaborative projects.
• Circulation in musical markets.
• Studies equipped with audio production equipment.
• Young people trained with technical skills for audio production.
• Entrepreneurship projects launched.
• Access to music markets by the beneficiaries of the project.
The resources allocated to the LASO Project come from the investment budget of the Cultural Entrepreneurship Group of the Ministry of Culture, as follows:
2012: $44.488 USD
2013: $93.638 USD
2014: $84.971 USD
2015: $89.205 USD
2016: $68.830 USD