Empatia's Pilot in Germany

The city of Wuppertal (350.000 inhabitants, North Rine-Westfalia, Germany) recently established a ‘department for participation,’ a team responsible for strengthening citizen participation in town. EMPATIA works with the new team for supporting a comprehensive new model of Participatory Budgeting in the city. The EMPATIA platform is used in Wuppertal as a kind of show window for the financial department of the municipality, channeling all aspects of information and participation regarding the municipal budget into one platform. Most importantly, as one of the first cities in Germany, Wuppertal is implementing a co-decisional PB process. While typical German PBs are consultative, the municipality of Wuppertal is testing in cooperation with EMPATIA how a budget based PB (i.e. defining a concrete budget to be spent by citizens) can be implemented in a German municipality. A multichannel process has been designed together with German pilot partner Zebralog. The PB process consists of three main participation phases, including the main channel www.buergerbudget.wuppertal.de, as well as several on site events. The events are facilitated by EMPATIA/Zebralog. EMPATIA also provides consultancy to the municipality regarding their communication campaign for getting citizens involved in the Participatory Budgeting process. See EMPATIA's portal for information, dialogue and citizens' participation in Wuppertal: https://www.buergerbudget.wuppertal.de/