Urban October 2022: Time to consider citizen participation

Reinhard Dietrich, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

October is the urban month. Every year, UN Habitat invites us to join a conversation about the challenges and opportunities created by the fast rate of change in the world’s cities and towns. Everyone interested in sustainable urbanisation from national and local governments, universities, NGOs, and communities is encouraged to hold or participate in events and activities.  

This year, Urban October has the theme of “Mind the Gap. Leave No One and No Place Behind”. It puts the spotlight on widening inequalities in living conditions across the world. The triple C challenge – COVID-19, climate change, and conflict – usually hits the most vulnerable people the hardest. Therefore, Urban October call on cities to harness transformational change and ensure a better life for all in an urbanising world.  

Engaging all stakeholders is key for achieving this change in cities and for making progress towards SDG 11. This is where participation comes in: It allows all members of a society, including marginalised groups, to articulate their interests and shape political decision-making. Participation is a way to empower citizens to take active roles in the democratic process. Only if reforms are developed in an inclusive way and supported by citizens can they have a long-term impact. This means that we need transparent and comprehensible solutions with widespread support. 

But how to implement participation in a meaningful and inclusive manner? At PartiCipate, we offer guidance and advice. Take the questionnaire to find out which participation strategy works best for your purpose! You can also explore cost-free participation platforms and a large range of participation tools with printable method cards.  

Tip: If you are not sure where to start with the participation journey, answer these 9 multiple choice questions and we will make some suggestions.  

It’s time to bridge the gap and start a meaningful participation process in your city for #urbanoctober!  

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