"Cause commune" Project - First meeting with the population of Chavannes-près-Renens

"Cause commune" Project - First meeting with the population of Chavannes-près-Renens

On Tuesday, 9 July 2019, researchers from NCCR LIVES, association representatives and employees of the City of Chavannes-près-Renens (Vaud) met with that municipality’s population to discuss the inhabitants’ needs. The objective was to develop activities that improved their social environment and quality of life while focusing on social connection.

The social environment and the possibility of being an active participant in community life are determining factors in a population’s mental and physical health. The “Cause Commune” project, conducted by the National centre of competence in research LIVES “Overcoming vulnerability: life course perspective” in collaboration with the City of Chavannes-près-Renens, aims to involve residents in the organisation of their town. 

Targeting population groups

To ensure that community activities meet the population’s real needs, residents actively participate in their definition through focus groups facilitated by representatives of the Social Cohesion Department of the Commune of Chavannes-près-Renens. These meetings are organised by district with local actors (associations, representatives of the authorities, police, etc.). During the first forum, held at the Collège de la Planta, four groups exchanged ideas and perspectives on activities that could be carried out, as well as on the method used: 

  • Children (0-10 years old)
  • Young people (11-24 years old)
  • Parents
  • Seniors (55+)

Many ideas were introduced and discussed, such as waste management and the creation of a friendly sports centre. The forum was also an opportunity to present the Cause Commune approach and the research projects that support it.

The "Cause Commune" Project in Brief

This intervention and research, co-financed by the Etat de Vaud and the Fondation Leenaards, aims to test the impact of the social environment on inhabitants’ health. Conducted over four years, it will include three phases:

  1. Establish a diagnosis in close collaboration with the municipal authorities and the population
  2. Develop new activities based on information collected from the population
  3. Issue recommendations that may also be useful to other municipalities and cantons

More information on the "Cause commune" project is available on the City of Chavannes-près-Renens website. 

SOLIDARITIES graduate student conference

Questions of how solidarity forms—and why and when it sticks—have been foundational to the social sciences: early scholars were attentive to social cohesion and class unity; more recently, notions of solidarity have been conceptualized in relation to performative assemblies of social movements and networks of collective action. We invite paper contributions from across disciplines as well as multi-modal presentations (performance, poetry, video, sonic ethnography, or demonstration), which explore the complex engagements with solidarity that emerge from—and respond to—anthropology’s history, methods, and modes of analysis.


Mythri Jegathesan is a cultural anthropologist and Assistant Professor at Santa Clara University (SCU). Since 2008, she has conducted ethnographic projects on labor aspiration and postwar agro-economic transitions and with members of the Working Women's Front, the first women-led trade union to organize women workers across formal and informal sectors in Sri Lanka. Dr. Jegathesan has published in Anthropological Quarterly, Dialectical Anthropology, and SAMAJ: South Asia Multidisciplinary Journal. Her first monograph, Tea and Solidarity: Tamil Women and Work in Postwar Sri Lanka, is part of the Decolonizing Feminisms series of University of Washington Press. 

Submission Guidelines

  • Individual Presentation SubmissionsPlease submit a concise abstract (max. 300 words) along with a brief bio (presenter’s name, program, year of study, research focus, and contact information) to jhuanthrogradconference@gmail.com by July 15, 2019. For multi-modal presentations, please indicate any equipment requirements. 
  • Panel Submissions: Please submit a concise panel abstract along with three to four individual paper abstracts (max. 300 words) to jhuanthrogradconference@gmail.com by July 15, 2019. 
  • The conference will take place on Friday and Saturday, September 20-21, 2019 at Johns Hopkins University’s Homewood campus. We encourage submissions from graduate students across disciplines as well as artists and practitioners. Submission of full papers is required no later than two weeks prior to the start of the conference. 

New issue of LIVES Impact: "Mental Health through Internet-basd Intervention? Using LIVIA to overcome grief"

Mental health services are rapidly adapting to the digital age, offering an increasing number of internet-based interventions such as LIVIA. Aimed at people experiencing prolonged grief symptoms due to the loss of a spouse, LIVIA offers similar advantages to other internet-based interventions. Therefore, the timing and pace of the intervention can be determined individually. Moreover, IBIs such as LIVIA also offer a high level of anonymity, removing barriers to counselling or therapy due to stigmatization.

Key messages

  • Internet-based interventions in mental health such as LIVIA are easy to access, affordable, offer a high degree of anonymity and reduce stigmatization associated with traditional face-to-face therapies/interventions.

  • Consisting of 10 weekly sessions, LIVIA has been shown to reduce grief, depression and psychological distress whilst increasing satisfaction with life among older adults experiencing prolonged grief symptoms.

  • Drawing on cognitive behavioural therapy, LIVIA is effective after spousal bereavement and separation/divorce also for individuals with less severe grief symptoms, making it suitable for indicated prevention.


Find here the complete version of the policy brief