European cities are increasingly giving their inhabitants a voice on local matters by asking urbanites how to spend municipal budgets and engaging them on innovative platforms.
Local leaders believe engaging citizens can strengthen democracy and speed up Europe’s green transition, as most of the requests from the public relate to sustainability and the environment. Some even claim givinginhabitants more say on it can hinder authoritarian tendencies.
However, according to its critics, these tools are not enough to stop populism and could even be used to mask local leaders’ discretionary decisions.
EURACTIV takes a closer look in this special report.
This publication reflects only the author’s view and the Research Executive Agency or European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.
Lorsqu’ils sont interrogés par les dirigeants sur ce qu’ils souhaitent pour leurs villes, les Européens vivant en ville placent la transition environnementale, les infrastructures durables et les espaces publics verts en tête de leurs priorités.READ MORE
After the successive crises over two decades, a core issue for the Conference on the Future of Europe should be how to ensure the resilience of the EU and put policies in favour of European citizens first, Slovenia's State Secretary Gašper Dovžan told EURACTIV.READ MORE
European cities are using online tools to engage their inhabitants, but a lack of digital skills and access could amplify existing inequalities.READ MORE
To fight democratic backsliding and strengthen local democracy, cities have developed creative tools to boost citizen engagement, such as participatory budgeting and regional consultations.
These forms of public participation are meant to bring democracy closer to citizens, giving them a voice in local matters.READ MORE
Projects meant to give power to EU city dwellers risk being reduced to a 'box-ticking' exercise unless municipal leaders can convince as many of their constituents as possible to participate.READ MORE