Presentation on theme: "The link between participatory governance and sustainability The evolution of participatory governance in the Netherlands Contribution to the Civicus conference:"— Presentation transcript:
The link between participatory governance and sustainability The evolution of participatory governance in the Netherlands Contribution to the Civicus conference: How Can We Build Political Will for Participatory Governance? Challenges of broadening and deepening citizen participation Glasgow, June 17 – 18, 2008 Jurgen van der Heijden De Universiteit van Amsterdam
Overview Two stories, their connection, and an advise for action: Story about a sustainable neighbourhood Story about three generations of participatory governance Connection: how sustainability of the neighbourhood and good participatory governance cohere An advise for action
First story: what’s a house? More and more people work at home for part of the day, or week. The picture shows a building that consists of apartments suitable for the combination of living and work.
What’s a power plant? Houses converse solar energy into electricity, and store warmth from the sun in underground layers of water. Neighbourhoods and cities evolve towards being power plants, sometimes producing more than they need.
What’s a house, what’s a care centre? Care of elderly, sick and disabled people more and more takes place at home. Care centres move into neighbourhoods, and neighbourhoods evolve towards being care centres.
Towards a work - energy – care – house? In the small Dutch city of Culemborg a neighbourhood has evolved wherein the first houses now combine being a workplace, being part of a power plant, and being part of a care centre. What’s a house still?
Second story: on three generations of PG The first generation has roots of over a hundred years, when people gained their first rights to stand up against government in court. Since the 1970’s in one after the other country people got the right to give comment on a decision, and ask for a review. This is the hard core of the first generation, and of PG until today.
Second generation participatory governance Giving comment and asking review, the first generation, comes after the government has made public the decision it wants to take. The second generation is about the government involving the public in the design of the decision, so long before it’s officially been made public. This involvement, and the process of interaction going with it, is what most people refer to as participatory governance.
Third generation participatory governance Similar to the first and second generation is that the initiative comes from the government. Third generation participatory governance does turn this around: citizens take the initiative and involve the government, if necessary. This is an initiative within the public domain, citizens become social entrepreneurs.
Not connecting the two stories The first and the second generation PG evolved during a time wherein a constantly developing economy began to run against the wall. People couldn’t be denied their right any longer to oppose decisions in favour of constant development (1st G.), and where needed to still find room for further development (2nd G.). This development is not sustainable, but now we turn to another economy, wherein trust has primacy over development, and with the 3th G.
Connecting the two stories Managing energy supply, managing care and child care, keeping workplaces available, organising transport are all activities needed to manage a neighbourhood, like in the city of Culemborg: it depends on third generation PG. On the other hand third generation PG needs a neighbourhood like this. If energy, care, child care, etc. have been arranged in another way, often by the government, there’s no environment for third generation PG.
Participatory governance and sustainability Many don’t dispute the definition of sustainability with the help of PPP: People have better equal chances, and stronger social cohesion in this neighbourhood The benefits for the Planet, environment, nature, are clear in this neighbourhood The Profits are also clear, since costs for energy, transport, care, child care, and other services are down, since these services are so near.
How to work as citizens with 1st, 2nd and 3rd generation participatory governance? Combine the three generations: 1 st :Use the law whenever you can Make planners creative by showing them at first hand what plans probably won’t make it, because of the law. 2 nd :Keep talking with civil servants, and politicians, using every available platform Give ideas only, not your support (this is not parliament). 3 rd :Show social entrepreneurship Use what you have, combine the social and physical assets in your direct area. Be an entrepreneur in the first place, and only seek help from the government when necessary.
How to work as a government with 1st, 2nd and 3rd generation participatory governance? Combine the three generations: 1 st :Use the law whenever you can Make citizens creative by showing them at first hand what plans probably will make it, within the law. 2 nd :Keep talking with citizens using every available platform Get ideas only, not support (this is not parliament). 3 rd :Support social entrepreneurship Stop developing, and start using what you have, and only then start thinking of new developments. Let the citizen be an entrepreneur in the first place, and only give help when necessary.
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