e-Participa project
Interdisciplinary analysis of municipal citizen
participation for the design of virtual collaborative
environments
Virtual environments for local
citizen participation:
principal bases for design
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases for
design
Virtual environments for local citizen participation
principal bases for design
I.
What is e-Participation?
II.
e-Participa Project
III. e-Participation experiences
IV. Principal bases for design
2/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases for
design
What is Citizen Participation?
“All kind of activities where individual citizens -as well as
citizen groups and associations- engage in with the intention
of influencing public policy, either indirectly or directly”
Our project focuses on participative processes oriented
towards decision making at the municipal level and, more
specifically, on those processes that are organized or at least
supported by local government authorities.
Phases and criteria for participative processes
Transparency
Neutrality
INITIATIVE
MOBILIZATION
 Political accord
 Social accord
 Administrative
accord
 Plain objectives realism
 Reach
 Representativenesspluralism
PARTICIPATION
 Information
 Deliberation
EFFECTS/RESULTS
 Influence on policies
 Generation of
participative culture
 Institutional
coherence
3/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases for
design
What is Citizen e-Participation?
The utilization of Information and Communication
Technologies (ICT) -mainly Internet- to promote
and support citizen participation
Obstacles for e-Participation:




Legal
Organizational
Cultural
Technical and financial capacity
4/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases for
design
What is it?
e-Participa is a PhD research project at the Universitat
Oberta de Catalunya (Spain) to design a virtual
environment aimed to reinforce citizen
participation at the municipal level.
How will it be developed?
By means of an interdisciplinary methodological
approach which combines socio-political analysis with
systems design methodologies, thus integrating the
knowledge of real day to day citizen participation with
the enabling capabilities offered by the Internet.
5/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases for
design
Previous
Objective knowledge
Theoretical
analysis
Requisites
Requisites
Sociological
research
Design
Evaluation
Principles
Technical
research
Technical
research
Pilot
Construction
installations
Evaluation
Sociological
research
Design
Theoretical
analysis
•• Applicable
technologies
Free
Spain
Software
Citizens
Ceará
(Brazil):
Functionality
Theories
on
Citizen
••Participation,
Accessibility
University
Brazil
bound
o
Participation
in developing
Citizen
organizations
GUI
eDemocracy,
countries
••eGovernment,
External
Argentina
funding
Town-hall
civiletc.
servants
Internal
structure
(Spain):
• Catalonia
Politicians
Participation
experiences
• oParticipatory
processes
Municipal
e-Participation
• Participation
experts
e-Participation
systems &
• Business models
experiences
Final design
Construction
city-kiosey v.1
Pilot
installations
to the
future
6/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases for
design
Several e-participation experiences around the
world have been analyzed:








Consensus
DEMOS
Dito & Digalo
Webocracy
EDEN
OPA Ipatinga
Estatut Catalá
...
Lessons learnt:
• Positive consequences of e-participation
• Key factors for successful e-participation initiatives
• Shortcomings of current virtual environments
7/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases for
design
Positive consequences of e-participation
• Information sharing
• Quality discussions and effective communication
• The documentation of participative processes
while promoting their transparency
• The extension of citizen participation to a greater
number and range of citizen groups
8/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases for
design
Key factors for successful e-participation
initiatives
• Some are shared with face-to-face participation:
 Thorough planning of the participative process
 Commitment to the process on the part of political and
administrative entities
 Promotion of the processes
• Virtual participative environment
• Guarantee universal public access to the system
• Adequate training of citizens and public servants
• Mediation (or facilitation) of discussions
9/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases for
design
Shortcomings of current virtual environments
• Predominance of systems using proprietary software
• Do not take into account the role of moderators
• Participative processes lack continuity, consisting
normally of isolated events
• Main limitation: lack of compatibility with the
necessities and characteristics of the municipal
environment
10/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases
for design
Principal bases for design
1. A focus on the municipal environment
2. Attention to the groups involved in citizen
participation
3. Support for the face-to-face participative methods
already in operation
4. Development based on Free Software
5. Temporary use of the participation system
6. A tool for municipal government AND citizens’
groups
7. Promoting increased knowledge and social
networks
8. Quality discussion, supported by mediation and
transparency
9. Citizenship School
11/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases
for design
3. Support for the face-to-face participative
methods already in operation
Electronic participation supports and complements
rather than substitutes face-to-face participative
mechanisms and processes
The system can be easily integrated into existing face-to-face
participative processes:
• Participatory Budgeting
• Citizen Councils
• Neighborhood participative processes
• Internal participative work of government and citizen
organizations
• ...
12/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases
for design
4. Development based on Free Software
Advantages associated with open source software:
•
•
•
•
•
•
lower cost of development and implementation
higher level of technological innovation
independence with respect to suppliers
greater security and privacy
greater adaptability to specific needs
support of a greater number of languages
Whatever improvements that a municipality incorporates
into the system to attend to its specific needs will be
available to the entire community of users.
13/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases
for design
Principal bases for design
1. A focus on the municipal environment
2. Attention to the groups involved in citizen
participation
3. Support for the face-to-face participative
methods already in operation
4. Development based on Free Software
5. Temporary use of the participation system
6. A tool for municipal government AND citizens’
groups
7. Promoting increased knowledge and social
networks
8. Quality discussion, supported by mediation and
transparency
9. Citizenship School
14/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases
for design
7. Promoting increased knowledge and
social networks
The system will seek to take advantage of
Internet capabilities in order to promote
knowledge sharing, social networking, and a
culture of collaboration amongst citizens
Examples of collaborative tools:
• User profiles
• Possibility of personalizing the system
• Recognition of quality participation
15/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases
for design
8. Quality discussion, supported by
mediation and transparency
The system needs to promote informed, reflective,
quality discussions that lead to thoughtful decisions,
buttressed by the contributions of the different
collectives involved
User-friendly interface that facilitates:
• Integration with e-mails
• Incorporation of the discussions in a specific result
oriented participative methodology
• Easy monitoring of the discussion and intuitive access to
the interventions
• High communicative expressivity
• Debate mediation/facilitation:
 with tools for analysis of interventions, the creation of
summaries and questionnaires that participants will respond
to, and the introduction of sub forums, etc.
 high transparency level guaranteed by the system
16/17
What is
e-Participation?
e-Participa
Project
e-Participation
experiences
Principal bases
for design
Principal bases for design
1. A focus on the municipal environment
2. Attention to the groups involved in citizen
participation
3. Support for the face-to-face participative
methods already in operation
4. Development based on Free Software
5. Temporary use of the participation system
6. A tool for municipal government AND citizens’
groups
7. Promoting increased knowledge and social
networks
8. Quality discussion, supported by mediation and
transparency
9. Citizenship School
17/17
project
http://www.e-participa.org/
[email protected]
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Backup
slides
UML Design
19/17
Backup
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UML Design
20/17
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UML Design
21/17
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Visual Design
22/17
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