In order to create sustainable solutions and better decisions, those who will drive solutions must be involved in creating them. But how do you engage not just more, but better? And how do you ensure that multiple perspectives are heard and more people want to take part in the implementation?
How do we create a framework for better participation?
Those who will drive change must own change. Participation and involvement is the way forward when you need citizens’ acceptance and participation in the solution. Especially, in case of dilemma-filled questions where there is no simple yes or no. In addition to challenges where formal decision-makers need to feel the support for difficult decisions. This may include questions about which investments a pension fund should make, how to achieve the green transition or what it takes to ensure more inclusion in a large, rapidly growing city.
We like to say that the answer to every problem is all of us. The collective intelligence – the knowledge and resources we have together – is untapped and often overlooked. We find that there is fatigue among many decision-makers towards involving citizens and members (because it’s often the same soldiers of fortune you meet). Conversely, many citizens have a deep distrust of whether the system is actually listening to them.
A good place to start is to create an actual strategy for who, how and when there is a need to ensure more participation – in short, where it would actually be good to ensure involvement and access to other voices (and where it is not a good idea). Get a handle on ensuring that the frameworks and mandates that are invited to join in are solid and aligned politically and managerially. Finally, not least, ensure that there are enough systems in the organisation to ensure the participation that solves the task at hand.
We are here to help:
Develop participation strategies that focus on how collective intelligence can be activated to develop better solutions that more people take ownership of. Who is relevant to involve in which processes? How do we get them to participate meaningfully? Using which methods and programmes?
Map and evaluate the existing participation – get an overview of what is already in place, how it works and what could lift and create more impact.
Comprehensive strategic proposals for the development of member democracy, resident democracy, employee democracy, etc., with the aim of increasing participation and better solutions.
Developing strategy and solutions that support digital participation and create value-creating connections between digital and analogue forms of participation.