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Incubator for participatory democracy

Strasbourg 1st March 2016
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Incubator for participatory democracy

As part of the World Forum for Democracy 2015, the Council of Europe organised a hackathon for the creation of a participatory democracy incubator, assembling experts on democracy innovation and political decision-makers.

It gathered 30 experts, researchers, elected representatives from cities, social and democratic innovators, grassroots activists and civil servants. During the collaborative workshop, participants were invited to think of the best ways to support the development of transparent, participative and collaborative democracy. For one day, the participants were on a mission to build the “best incubator for local participatory democracy they can imagine”.

An incubator is usually a space, linked to a community, where project leaders can have access to support, expertise, resources and services to prototype and grow their idea. The challenge is to adapt this concept to democracy, to find out what kind of ecosystem and support should be built around democratic innovations for a greater impact, while using the immense expertise and knowledge accumulated at the World Forum for Democracy.

The incubator has the overall goal to bring together local decision-makers and democracy innovators to increase citizen participation and impact in cities’ democratic decision-making.