Information about participatory budgeting
Participatory budgeting is a system that enables the citizens to influence in the way in which tax revenues will be used. Here you will find more information about participatory budgeting and learn how it is different from other ways of participating.
What is participatory budgeting?
Participatory budgeting is a democratic way of operating where a municipality or other public operator devolves its decisive economic power to the people of the region it governs. For example, a municipality can reserve a certain amount of funds from its budget for the citizens to plan and decide on the expenditure of the funds. This is how the power is spread out from the politicians and office-holders to the people.
What is central in participatory budgeting is the genuine sensation of the participants of having their opinions heard as well as having results for their actions. Operations where only the politicians or administrative personnel have the decision-making power or where the citizens only get to influence in matters that are insignificant do not reflect the principles of participatory budgeting.
Participatory budgeting came into being at the end of the 1980s in Porto Alegre, Brazil, where the system was developed in order to improve the living conditions of the poor neighbourhoods and the disparity between the residential areas. Participatory budgeting has later expanded and become a method for increasing the opportunities of all people to participate and have an influence. Participatory budgeting arrived in Finland in the 2010s.
Significant international operators, such as the World Bank and the United Nations (UN), have advocated for participatory budgeting.