The democratic cities of the future demand new technologies to enable us to undertake distributed forms of political action and collaborative decision-making. To this end, Participa LAB, the Medialab-Prado Collective Intelligence Laboratory for Democratic Participation, invites people from all over the world to Madrid, to think together and develop new digital mechanisms that address challenges relating to democratic participation. The ten projects chosen cover the wide range of repertoire of participation technologies. The projects selected come from Europe, Africa, North America and South America. We have in turn applied compensatory criteria for gender parity in the selected projects. We will chosee around 6 collaborators for every project. Check the open call for collaborators
Below we describe the ten selected projects A new model of municipal democracy: combining self selected and randomly selected participationArantxa Mendiharat and Lyn Carson
The advocates of self-selection (participatory democracy) and the advocates of random selection (deliberative democracy) have mostly been working separately from each other. This is unfortunate, because the combination of the two could be much better than only one or the other. Specifically, we believe that self-selected groups are very good for proposing and commenting, and that randomly selected bodies (mini-public) are very good for reviewing proposals, deliberating, and making the final recommendation. Terry Bouricius has developed a model that combines the best features of both types of participation that could be used in a national legislature, and David Schecter and Brian Sullivan have proposed a “scaled down” version that could effectively be used in a municipality. However, although the components of the model have been tested in practice, the model as a whole has never been developed and customized in enough detail to test. Cities such as Madrid and Barcelona are world leaders in experimenting with new forms of municipal democracy, so the Collective Intelligence for Democracy workshop would be the ideal venue to develop a specific model with a strong chance of being tested, evaluated, improved and eventually institutionalized.@StakeEric Gordon. Engagement Lab
@Stake is a multiplayer role-playing game that builds empathy and creativity for small group deliberation. Whether it’s used in classrooms, conferences, strategic board meetings, or public events, @Stake helps players understand how productive conversations thrive with authentic listening and diverse perspectives. It’s free and easy to play online or as a tabletop card game.
Even when all parties have the best intentions, civic or political issues often involve conflicting interests coupled with deep resentments and community divides. With @Stake, players are provided a deeper understanding of community needs by considering different perspectives before making collective decisions. In the game, 3–5 players introduce their character’s perspectives, jump into think mode to invent creative solutions to the issue being discussed, and take turns proposing their ideas and arguing from their character’s point of view, complete with secret agendas. After three rounds, the player in the decider role chooses the best idea and awards points. The player with the most points wins. Outcomes from the game can directly factor into community-wide decisions.WikumAmy Zhang
Large-scale discussions between many participants abound on the internet today, on topics ranging from political arguments to group coordination. But as these discussions grow to tens of thousands of posts, they become ever more difficult for a reader to digest. This leads to problems for applications of discussion such as collective deliberation or decision-making processes. In this proposal, we describe a workflow called recursive summarization, implemented in our Wikum prototype, that enables a large population of readers, editors, or conversation participants to work in small doses. More than just a single summary, our workflow produces a summary tree that enables a reader to explore distinct subtopics at multiple levels of detail based on their interests. We have built a working prototype of this tool and have conducted lab evaluations to show that Wikum can be used more effectively than a control to quickly construct a summary tree. We also have showed via lab evaluations that a summary tree is more effective than the original discussion in helping readers identify and explore the main topics. We have formed a collaboration with the Wikimedia Foundation and are now exploring the use of this tool to help Wikipedia editors summarize and close deliberative discussions that happen on Wikipedia (called Requests for Comment).Taxi CitoyenBouiti Tchibinda Boursier
Africa is still unexploited territory in civic tech. Our democracies need the support of our communities. It is important to be able to innovate in the approach with our elected representatives on a direct scale, thus enabling them to better understand the aspirations of the populations they lead. To do this, it is important to develop proximity and test a new approach in the relations between elected representatives and populations. The TAXI Citoyen project aims to stimulate debate spontaneously through videos taken during our exchanges in public transport. Its ethics charter does not allow insult to the elected, it allows to pass direct and digestible information to what governs us. This type of approach is innovative because it also aims to captivate passengers on board Taxi, creating a community consolidation.docARTDavid Alfonsín Lareo
To document is not to register facts but to show processes. It is not an office, but an attitude: a mentality rather than a technique. The processes of collective construction and collaborative prototyping become invisible or disappear after the presence of the deliverable product because those processes escape the conventional tools of documentation. The team of EduCaaS, in collaboration with Antonio Lafuente, is designing a digital tool that allows to visualize these processes and also to model them so that they can be replicated, modified and evaluated. This tool is a fundamental piece in citizen laboratories, understood as devices for listening and fundamental open spaces for the democratic renewal of our society. Bot activista - Una herramienta del Toolkit DemocráticoPedro Markun
The Democratic Toolkit is a platform that brings together a set of tools and knowledge banks and has the objetive of strengthening the process of dispute institutional politics by young people, activists, entrepreneurs and citizens in general. The Democratic Toolkit aims to facilitate the replication of these political experiments. The platform will be open and will be available to other groups and candidates. There will be a work of articulation with groups of other localities of the region for the use of the Democratic Toolkit, through the Network of Political Innovation, CLIP (Latin American Connections of Political Innovation) and other local actors. For this call, the objective is to develop a specific component of the toolkit: an activist bot. This digital campaign assistant, in an ethical and transparent way, will be able to obtain information from the networks, produce intelligence to subsidize the strategy and free up the time of the campaign team to potentiate the results. Designing a community collaboration tool for urban green space planningErika Whillas
Increasing urban green spaces is one successful strategy to combat increased heat waves and urban heat island effect risks caused by climate change, with community participation in their planning and maintenance necessary for their success. Community participation ensures that urban green space projects address local needs and reflect the cultural, demographic, and development history of the community. However, in-person community collaboration can be costly to prepare, run, report and replicate.
The prototype’s key goal is to make in-person community engagement processes easier for decision-makers to run, report and replicate specifically for urban green space planning. This will be done through collaborative workshops that utilize geo-spatial data sets layered onto an interactive map, with participants’ ideas and needs documented on their own data layer. Data will be gathered on Madrid and New York to test the replicability of the system. A trial workshop will be run during the 15 day ‘Collective intelligence for democracy’ event to assess the success and iterative development needs of the prototype. The prototype uses participatory GIS (PGIS) to assist face-to-face community collaboration to educate participants on environmental, economic and political considerations of urban green space planning in their city. Participants then engage in facilitated discussion, with the prototype capturing their green space ideas and day-to-day needs. These ideas will be delivered to decision makers and the public in the form of dynamically generated reports based on the available geo-spatial data, as well as being accessible online. SocialMaps | The Open Urbanism PlatformEdgar Martínez, Eduardo Sierra, Eugenio Fernández, Jesús Cepeda y Graciela Reyes, Kirstin Isenberg
Social Maps is a digital platform that seeks to transform the urban development model from a traditional, hierarchical and closed model to a collaborative, decentralized urban development model that leverages the intelligence and talents scattered throughout its community. We call it "open urbanism". We propose a city planned and analyzed for and by its inhabitants and we hope that SocialMaps helps to create that space and collaboration.
The objective is to establish an open urban development model based on public opinion and citizen participation. This, in order to accelerate the process necessary to improve the public space and to build an urban environment that reflects and responds to the needs, opinions and proposals of the population.
We will work on the following modules:1. Urban co-creation module2. Analysis of the urban environment module 3. Newsfeed and notifications moduleConsul going worldwideVanessa Tonini & Digidem Lab
The citizen platform Consul has turned out to be a very versatile tool, not just for cities like Madrid (http://decide.madrid.es/), but also for other types of organisations and movements. In the last few months have seen the social housing company in Paris using it for participatory budgeting (http://budget-participatif.rivp.fr) and the British People’s Momentum for their annual meeting (http://mxv.peoplesmomentum.com).
This project is about finding the best ways to lower the threshold for the installation and setup process for these new target audiences, by a combination of development, design and communication skills.
We will work in two phases, by first identifying new target audiences, their needs and pain points; then work iteratively on the setup process and documentation. GAUPSurveyFausto B. Isolan
GAUPSurvey is an open source online tool proposing an alternative method through which the public produce maps and spatial data that represent their perceptions of the urban space in question. Is an initial prototype installed on a local server. It is a 'fork' of Limesurvey (free and open source online survey application) for creating map-based questions, allowing to locate places, areas, and/or routes on a map. By following the most recent discussions about democratic participation, more specifically on PPGIS (Public Participation Geographic Information System) knowledge area, it is a tool that can improve citizen participation and the civic engagement. By collecting locations and spatial data that represent public perception, GAUPSurvey aggregates a valuable information to the public opinion - its location, allowing grouping and data analysis in a GIS. Results, in the form of maps, also have potential to support face to face public debate and to report the public opinion to decision makers in ready to use and easy way.
Online survey platforms are widespread used, but fail to implement tools that allow questionnaires to be built considering the potential of spatial data. GAUPSurvey aims to improve code and the front end design, allowing other question/answer options based on maps. In sum, we aim to get forward in the GAUPSurvey development. Possible improvements include: Help in answering the questions and use the mapping tools; advances in the map drawing tools: multiple points, buffer (influence area) and classifying features; convert the answers output to a GeoJSON format associated to each answerer; multilingual; mobile phone and tablet version; incorporate analysis tool into the browser that transforms the collected data into maps and graphs in an easy to use way; and customize interface colours, features and logos to every use case.