Clearly this is not final – I’ve only been in Brazil for a week. Also this stems from talking with with some academics and two São Paulo city public servants, rather than original research. However, this is my current take-home:
- If we don’t get PB right first time, people will lose confidence in it.
- This means we need effective processes so that people know they have made the choices.
- It also means that what is promised must be delivered.
- Projects must be monitored as they proceed.
- Also, due diligence/monitoring must happen at the end of project periods.
- And that data must be analysed to see what is effective.
- Don’t rely on revenue forecasts, because what is forecast may not materialise!
- Annual cycles, i.e. projects that must be started and completed in a year, may be sub-optimal.
- LeithChooses’ turnout (1000/20,000 = 5%) is good.
- Around the world, participation is not very high, even when there are fantastic mechanisms such as Madrid: https://decide.madrid.es/presupuestos?locale=en
- The current Scottish model of PB should have a deliberation stage before projects are formulated.
- At the moment, PB process-runners (e.g.LeithChooses steering group) set themes, then invite projects.
- The Brazilian model involves participatory deliberation on what the themes should be.
- There should be some data gathered on who participates.
- This is to show whether PB schemes are truly participatory, and whether they attract votes from people who need the services PB would offer.