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Launch of International Winter School on Participatory Democracy Tools

The Division of Elections and Participatory Democracy, (DG II) of the Council of Europe launched an International Winter School on Participatory Democracy Tools on 6 December 2021 in Tbilisi, Georgia.  Participants from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine exchanged, discussed and learned mechanism and tools how best to engage Citizens in Local Decision-Making. The event combined presentations and case studies of tools and models for inclusive citizen engagement with interactive group exercises and roundtable discussions. The participants, from both public sector and civil society, stirred lively discussions and exchanged ideas how to implement the learned tools and models into practical initiatives in their communities. The training event aims at fostering international and inter-sectoral cooperation and establishing a network of civil participation professionals and practitioners.

The training program covered a wide range of topics and introduced participants to innovative methodologies for civil participation, developed by the Council of Europe, such as the Civil Participation in Decision-Making Toolkit, the CivicLab methodology, the Uchange Game or the School Participatory Budgeting method. Furthermore, the participants were involved in exercises for designing public consultations plans, which encouraged them to develop their own projects and strategies for maximizing citizen inclusion.

"I believe the skill sets developed, new knowledge acquired and contacts of like-minded people gained in the “Winter School on Participatory Democracy Tools” are critical for making our communities more inclusive and participatory. I feel honored to be part of this excellent program, it was just what I needed to boost change in my working practices. I appreciate the structured approach to such a wide topic as it is participatory democracy with some fantastic takeaways which I can put into practice” -mentioned one of the participants.

The International Winter School on Participatory Democracy Tools will be completed by six online in-depth training and a closure event in April 2022.  

Training report

Tbilissi, Georgia 6 December 2021
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