The participatory dialogue around the planned “House of Democracy” is an important contribution towards institutionalising further participation processes.
After the city of Frankfurt launched the participatory dialogue on the planned “House of Democracy” in October of last year, a discussion titled “What does democracy mean to you?” is taking place today in the Paulskirche. During this discussion, we would like to further explore the ideas and suggestions gathered.
The Volt faction in the Römer welcomes this broad participatory process as citizen participation is a crucial element in the development of democracy . “We can see from the results that citizens have invested time and effort in their responses. They only do that when they trust that something will happen with their input. This trust must be followed by action” says Britta Wollkopf, spokesperson on culture-policy for Volt im Römer.
From her perspective, the results show that the respondents focus less on the building and more on the program’s design: It should be inclusive, multilingual, and interactive, while also targeting as many young people as possible. It is also noteworthy that many respondents in general wish for better conflict resolution skills and the opportunity to experiment with democratic processes. “If the City Council takes up these suggestions, it has the potential to create a new and vibrant location for democracy and serve as a model for other European cities.”, she continues.
As the faction aims to establish further citizen participation in the city, it is essential, in their view, to reflect on the participatory dialogue retrospectively in order to derive standards under which participation should take place in the future.