Coincidence

If we were given the opportunity to do things differently and transform our local collective identity, what would we like to change? If we all performed this change together, would people start to accept it as the new local normal way?

“That’s the way we do it here.”

This is what 900 local people tested out in Runcorn and Picton (Liverpool), by performing daily actions within their community, which were sent to them by text messages, every day for 14 days.

From “Look at familiar places with the eyes of a tourist.”, to “Say hello to people you walk past.”, the actions were interpreted in unique ways by the participants and gathered daily on a project blog.

“We looked amazed, eyes wide open. It’s something we noticed for the first time…”

Coincidence became an excuse for people to be more daring, knowing that hundreds of people were also performing, and sharing their individual experiences with the Coincidence community.

“It made me feel good, as if I was part of something. I’ve made some friends and hope they will keep 
in touch.”

Coincidence was a pilot project, developed by Laurence Payot as part of a one-year action Research Bursary with Multistory. The daily actions were devised after many sessions in the local community and discussions in the streets with residents, and would take a completely different social or political form if created with other communities.

Responding to the growing trend of online communities posting performed actions on social media platforms, Coincidence tested out this model to grow a sense of place and community on a local, neighbour-to-neighbour scale.