2023 Award "Best Practice in Citizen Participation"
Bogotá: Itinerant Citizen Assembly
The Council of Bogotá (Concejo de Bogotá) has promoted, with the support of civil society organizations, three citizen assemblies (2020, 2021 and 2023). This deliberative space is a good practice of political innovation that allows the voice of the citizenry to be heard and proposals for decision makers to be built. In this way, in the year 2020, the Citizen Assembly identified 30 difficulties and presented 34 proposals related to the territorial ordering of the city, on that occasion 110 people participated in 6 thematic commissions. The results of the exercise were presented to the president of the Bogotá Council and to the incoming president for the 2021 term of the corporation.
In the following year, the Citizen Assembly was part of the #LaRutaPOT citizen participation strategy, which integrated the House Council and Citizen Proposals, three spaces where citizens and the Bogotá Council worked hand in hand to prepare 1,130 contributions to the Plan of Bogotá Territorial Ordering, a technical document that stipulates the regulations on territorial ordering and the vision of the city for the next twenty years. 63 people organized in 7 commissions participated in this exercise; the results of the deliberation were systematized in two reports that were presented to the city councilors and their regulatory support units. Additionally, these reports were published on the official website of the Bogotá Council and can be consulted in the article "With broad citizen participation, #LaRutaPOT of the Bogotá Council was fulfilled."
The objective of the Itinerant Citizen Assembly of Bogotá 2023 will be to consolidate a vision of the city for the four-year period 2024 to 2027 that affects the political agenda of the candidacies for the Bogotá Mayor's Office and the Bogotá Council. In this way, citizens will deliberate on the fundamental issues of the city that decision makers should include in the government plan for the next four years.
To meet this objective, the citizen training process focused on the prioritized topics for the 2023 Itinerant Citizen Assembly: mobility, security, environment and land use planning, and public space. Additionally, a component of deliberative democracy was included with the aim of strengthening basic knowledge and skills to stimulate deliberation among citizens. The summoned citizens were divided into 4 commissions, each commission was made up of 3 groups of 10 people, taking into account this distribution, each of the components of the training strategy was deployed.
The first two Itinerant Citizen Assemblies of Bogotá have left relevant issues for the city on the table that still represent great challenges for the political debate in the Bogotá Council. For example, mobility, citizen participation, security, environment, public works, accountability and transparency among others. For this reason, the 2023 Bogotá Citizen Assembly intends to address, through deliberation, city issues that can contribute to the construction of a joint agenda and vision of the city between citizens and decision makers for the next four years.
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