29 November from 9.30 to 11.30 - Room 2 - Palais de l'Europe

Interpretation: FR/EN


Sponsored by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe 


Is civic crowd-funding an adequate way of raising resources to fund public infrastructure and projects of cash-strapped local governments, increasing citizen engagement and ownership and giving a chance to smaller, less influential groups to promote their projects? Can it lead to weakening public authorities' responsibility in funding important services and works from the public budgets?

Citizinvestor, USA

There are countless government projects in the U.S. and around the world that are not completed due to lack of funding. These are projects like building new parks, renovating neighbourhood pools and adding bike lanes - projects that governments want to take on and citizens want to invest in, but often can't. Crowdfunding focused on government projects is sprouting up in the U.S. and abroad, giving citizens a direct say in where government spends their money for the first time in history. In this lab, Citizinvestor – a crowdfunding platform for government projects in the U.S - will present the different models for civic crowd funding and will lead a discussion on the biggest questions surrounding this new form of civic participation.

Website: http://www.citizinvestor.com/

Video: http://player.vimeo.com/video/63183552


Ms Kara Marie RAYNOR, USA, Staff Accountant at Citizinvestor

Kara Raynor is a Staff Accountant at Citizinvestor. In this role, Kara works with the Citizinvestor Co-founders to develop policy on financial transactions between municipalities, citizens and Citizinvestor, Inc. Kara is also responsible for auditing Citizinvestor's financial transaction processes to ensure that they are properly meeting the needs of both municipalities and citizens. Kara has worked as an auditor for Raymond James Financial as well as Ernst & Young.


Mr Jordan Tyler RAYNOR, USA, Co-founder of Citizinvestor

Jordan Raynor is a Co-founder of Citizinvestor. He is an entrepreneur who has spent his career using technology to solve real problems in government and politics. Prior to co-founding Citizinvestor, Jordan served as Client Director at Engage where he led work on the Voting Information Project - an initiative that works with U.S. election officials to put polling place location data for all 50 states in an API. In 2010, he led foursquare's "I Voted" Project using this data set. Jordan was honored as a Google Fellow at the 2010 Personal Democracy Forum.



Discussants are invited to make critical comments during the lab on the impact, transferrability, sustainability and risk of the initiative.

Ms Charlotte NØRLUND‐MATTHIESSEN, France, Co-founder and COO of ClicknSign

Charlotte Nørlund-Matthiessen is co-founder and COO of ClicknSign, the platform for participatory democracy in Europe where citizens support and fund citizen law campaigns. Prior to founding ClicknSign, she has worked in and around the EU institutions, notably with The German Marshall Fund, for a Polish MEP in the European Parliament and for the European Commission in the Secretariat General in the Unit coordinating the Europe 2020 strategy and policies. Charlotte holds a Master degree from the College of Europe and one from Sciences-Po Paris.


Mr Apolonio RUIZ‐LIGERO, Spain, Vice-Governor of the Council of Europe Development Bank

Apolonio Ruiz Ligero was elected Vice Governor on the 19 June 2001, reelected on 15 September 2005 and on 10 June 2011. He was Secretary of State at the Spanish Government on two occasions, Secretary of State of Commerce from 1988 to 1991 and Secretary of State for external Trade from 1993 to 1996. During both periods, he was also Chairman of the Spanish Institute of Foreign Trade and Chairman of the Aid Development Fund Commission. He participated in all Bretton Woods Organizations (World Bank, International Monetary Fund and specialized agencies) as Deputy Spanish Governor. From 1996 to 2001, he was General Director of the Economic and Commercial Office of the Spanish Embassy in Paris.

Ms Hala SULAIMAN, Bahrain, Communications Consultant

Hala Sulaiman has over 19 years of holistic media experience including journalism, broadcasting,  production and translation covering political, economic and social affairs. As a communications consultant she is experienced in both the public and private sector. She is a board member of the International Advertising Association (IAA – Bahrain Chapter), current member and former board member of the Bahrain Public Relations Association, and founding member of Social Media Club.org (Bahrain and Middle East Chapter). Besides, she is a member of the Society for Cerebral Palsy Children and involved in several fund raising activities for children with special needs.


Mr Yusmadi YUSOFF, Malaysia, Former Member of the Parliament of Malaysia

Yusmadi Yusoff is a lawyer and former Member of Parliament of Balik Pulau, a rural constituency in Penang, Malaysia (2008-2013). While serving as a Member of Parliament, he was appointed by the King of Malaysia as a member of Special Committee for the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission. As a lawyer, Yusmadi specializes in criminal defense, human rights and public interest litigation and Islamic law related cases. He is also the founder and Chairman of RIGHTS Foundation, an independent charitable trust focusing on Regional Initiatives for Governance, Human Rights and Social Justice.


Rapporteur to the plenary session

Ms Andrée BUCHMANN, Vice-President of the Urban Community of Strasbourg, Alsace Regional Councillor, Vice-President of the French delegation of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe.

Born in Mulhouse, she was active after her secondary education in the environmental movement, both professionally and as an activist. She has chaired since its creation the Observatory for Inland Air Quality, set up by the authorities in 2001.


Mr Stefano DOMINIONI, Head of Division, Europe Division, Office of the Directorate General of Programmes, Council of Europe



Your opinion

Does/Do the following initiative(s) increase significantly citizens' influence in the policy-making process and/or make democratic institutions more transparent, responsive and accountable? 

For the Citizinvestor initiative:
% Votes
95% 953
a. Yes
5% 50
b. No

Total Votes: 1,003

Voting is disabled because this poll expired on 29/11/13 12:00.