What obstacles arise when planning and implementing  new and innovative participatory tools?

Eutropian’s Giovanni Pagano and Lukacs Hayes joined EUARENAS project partners in Voru, Estonia on 29 and 30 March 2023. Our cheerful Eutropian team members led a workshop to better understand some of the issues that occurred during the piloting processes of cities.

We wanted to specifically focus on the challenges they experienced in the planning and implementation of their respective participatory processes. By learning what challenges they’ve been facing at various stages, we can use conclusions of the workshop to inform the EUARENAS development Toolbox of Experimental Participatory methods.

One of the issues we identified across all pilot participatory processes is the struggle to make their processes inclusive and representative with regards to ethnic minorities and young people.


EUARENAS and the pilots

EUARENAS is a Horizon2020 project that investigates innovative and experimental participatory governance practices. The project partners include the cities of Gdańsk, Poland; Reggio Emilia, Italy; and Varu, Estonia. 

Gdańsk experiments with different deliberative tools on the level of one or two districts, to involve local citizens and help them to improve their local identities. 

Reggio Emilia established Consulte, a city neighbourhood council  elected by local citizens and non-elective members to create area agreements regarding each neighbourhood between municipality and respective neighbourhoods, and to formulate and represent the needs and aspirations of their communities. 

Voru aims to bring the experience of social hackathons onto  the political level where local decision-makers become actively involved in the events. 

Teambuilding in Saunas

Last but least the team really enjoyed getting to know the culture of Varu and we jumped head first into ice-cold water following our sauna sessions in the woods.

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