Personal change, radical inclusion, and trust

By Robert Roche Olivar

This title may seem provocative or even utopian to some people, however, it expresses what research is showing regarding the necessary requirements to generate or implement, inclusive human systems.

The European ECO-IN Project has three objectives:

• To establish a way to assess the degree of inclusion in European schools
• To create an algorithm that makes it possible to determine the minimum European standard levels of good inclusion in these centers.
• To propose methods to increase and optimize these minimum levels.

At the present time, we are in the last months of the duration of the European project, having achieved the realization of the first two objectives.

From now, we are working on the third objective, that is, the creation of a proposal that can produce cultural changes, to increase and optimize the levels of inclusion in schools, improving the quality of how they relate to their stakeholders.

The impact of a questionnaire

Our experience at ECO-IN is that the algorithm research process (ongoing) has produced a powerful questionnaire. Only the application of these questions is facilitating cognitive processes and attitudes in our schools. The structure of the questionnaire is a huge help for schools to make an organized reflection, with new categories to review (self-analyze) their own levels of inclusion. This is a great first result.

These questions produced an awareness of Inclusion which, without a doubt, goes in the right direction of change.

One of the methods for this is the completion of a Self-Training Course for Excellence in Inclusion, which has been set at 8 hours on an experimental and pilot basis, of which 4 face-to-face and 4 online. The participants, volunteers, are educators both from the school itself and from external experts or socio-political agents related to education. All this is done in schools in four of the seven countries participating in the ECO-IN Project: Lithuania, Romania, Italy and Spain. This course will be evaluated with a pre and post-test model in Experimental vs. Control design.

The other method is the application adapted to ECO-IN of the Prosocial Trust Center (Centro de Confianza Prosocial) already experienced in other European projects (SPRING and WIDE) by the LIPA-NET MIRADA LOCAL group.

This article intends to reflect on some interesting points related to this application and update on the Trust Center (PTC , Prosocial Trust Center) in the ECO IN Project, such as Inclusion, radical inclusion, trust, and prosociality as crucial for change, optimization and the increase in trust relationships.

What would be a radical inclusion?

If we want to advance from a minimum level of inclusion in a school, the first step would be to raise collective and individual awareness, by carrying out a self-diagnosis according to the guidelines of the central algorithm of the Project.

Another way to do this would be to bring to our consciousness what our exclusions of people, colleagues, and students are and have been, and try to reflect on how we can overcome them.

A radical inclusion needs to have these exclusions resolved. Radical inclusion would be the personal (and collective) commitment to face these deficiencies, and at the same time, openness is necessary to act prosocially towards inclusion and trust.

Prosocial Trust Center

It is an active and participatory prosocial space where collaborative relationships are fostered on issues of common interest, always linked to the objectives of ECO IN.

This space of dialogue It´s a link between the school and the environment.

The Prosocial Trust Center is an
interdisciplinary space where participants
try to establish positive human
relationships through prosocial
communication, setting aside their
respective statuses and even roles to allow
for the exchange of ideas, difficulties,
questions, cases and decisions, in a more
spontaneous horizontal and circular way
(Roche, 2022)


If we talk about building trust and an inclusive culture, we can find obstacles in the intervention. Resistance to change can be a common response. Our experience is that it is possible to create a trust center as long as people participate voluntarily.

An obstacle to personal change can be a lack of willfulness. This voluntariness can occur after knowing what prosociality is, what are the kinds of prosocial actions in each context, and what are their benefits for the recipients, for the authors, and for the relationship between them.

Prosociality, Socio-Emotional Learning, radical inclusion, and trust are the maximum values in ECO-IN that have to become the method to facilitate and stimulate personal change, without which we could not advance

This is the proposal for the ECO-IN project. Systemic inclusion is only possible if we consider the school as a complex system, immersed in a context, dialoguing and working together with all its stakeholders. To do this, we want to provide schools with new tools to connect with the territory and generate positive impulses for inclusion in the entire city.