Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Municipality of Rio de Janeiro/ Municipal Secretariat of Finance and Planning/ Sub-Secretariat for Planning and Monitoring of Results/ Planning Office
2018 - 2020
All the territory
The process aimed to promote high engagement and appropriation of the population in the elaboration process of the Sustainable Development and Climate Action Plan, including the longings of society, pointing out solutions. Strategies were created to reach various profiles and regions.
At the same time, the creation of the digital platform for broad participation and the understanding of the schools as nuclei highlighted the importance of strengthening the culture of participation as an educational practice for the entire city, starting the process that must be continuous and multifaceted in the citizen-public power relationship, to provide opportunities for involvement, appropriation and leadership of the Carioca population in the city's planning.
For the elaboration of the Plan, the Planning Office was based on three concepts of participation: legitimacy, representativeness and autonomy with online and in-person actions. Understanding the challenge of reaching the largest number and different profiles of citizens in such a large and multifaceted city, different strategies were created. Among them:
The results of the activities were displayed in the participatory.rio platform through graphics, videos, magazine, and presentations. The suggestions of the population were systematized for analysis and incorporation into the Plan.
The different formats allowed for greater approximation and listening to citizens and children from the many different regions of the city, and thus better knowledge of priorities and proposals, understanding the potential of the participants as agents of effective transformation.
Through a methodology that sought more than raise problems and point solutions, we tried to make the cariocas see that their small actions are important and that without their involvement the city hall is not able to achieve ambitious goals. Throughout the process, we reached more than 35,000 direct contributions and raised more than 800 actions already carried out in the territories.
The process was also educational, to the extent that it contributed to awakening in citizens individual responsibility in the improvement of the city. The methodology allowed us to raise actions that could be done individually and together, strengthening the power and reach of local non-governmental partnerships, and the process of collective construction of the city.
From these processes, it was possible to incorporate new actions, projects and goals into the Plan to meet the specific wishes of the population.
More than 65% of the goals and actions adopted in the Plan are derived from the opinions and wishes of the participants, making clear the Municipality's commitment to have a plan with effective citizen collaboration.
The practice innovates by bringing a set of differentiated activities to reach diverse audiences and broaden participation. The dynamic and continuous process allows opinions and suggestions to be absorbed throughout the construction of the Plan, understanding the citizen as an agent of transformation.
Innovative aspects of the activities:
All the methodologies and tools created for the different participation activities (online polls, face-to-face meetings, school involvement), are easily replicable in any city, with the understanding that the systematization and use of the results should be adapted to the planning instruments and local realities.
The modeling of the platform is quite simple and can be replicated in different digital environments; the surveys used survey forms. Likewise, the methodology used in the face-to-face meetings is very objective and fully replicable, as is the methodology for listening to the children. The processes were designed to be objective and used few financial resources.
The city of Rio de Janeiro has territories with diverse characteristics both culturally and economically, and the city has been going through a serious economic crisis. To make the project viable, it was necessary to involve external partners and use the potential of the public administration.
Thus, we identified and invited partners that had aggregate objectives to ours, avoiding costs to the city government and ensuring success in the projects.
The municipal education network was involved because it has a large territorial capillarity with more than 1500 schools, diverse audiences and involving parents, students and the engaged population of its surroundings.
The partnership with Multirio - the city government's multimedia company with enormous potential and high quality standards - was fundamental in the construction of audio visual content with academic children's language and in the production of games.
Considering the budget context, we identified low-cost possibilities through the use of digital tools already employed by the city hall. The entire online platform, content and research were built with internal technicians.
We also highlight the partnerships with external institutions such as the UN, C40, and UFRJ ( Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro). This strong articulation made the activities feasible at a low cost for the city hall, and with great quality and commitment.
All the actions were coordinated by the Planning Office, which was responsible for the articulation with various partners, internal and external institutions. Each activity relied on different and specific partners, from planning, implementation, to the systematization of results. These partnerships were fundamental for the success and quality of the process.
In 2019, through a partnership with UN-Habitat, training workshops were held, involving 1300 people, among municipal technicians and partner institutions. One of these workshops, for example, made for municipal professionals, held with Multirio's support, promoted strong synergy of objectives and enhanced the partnership with education.
Also in 2019, face-to-face meetings were held in schools. These events were supported by UN-Habitat (New Urban Agenda - SDGs) and the C40 network (Climate Agenda) in the preparation of contents, reports, and propositional dynamics. The Education Secretariat supported it with its spaces and invitations. These meetings generated more than 1600 collaborations.
Still in November, together with UFRJ and the Education Network, through drawings and texts, we involved more than 25 thousand children. The works were analyzed by the UFRJ team.
The results of all the actions were grouped, and produced a total of more than 35 thousand collaborations analyzed by the Planning Office team.
Most of the partners involved had their own objectives complementary to the project's (UN-Habitat: SDG goals, C40: Climate Agenda), so the involvement and commitment went from the methodology, application to the analysis of the results.
The actions were designed to explain to the population that involvement and commitment are fundamental for changes to occur. Through a propositional methodology, developed by the city team together with the UN and C40 network, the population was led to propose actions that each one, individually, can do to collaborate with the goals, as well as actions for organizations and what all these actors ("city hall", "local organizations" and "me") together can do.
In partnership with the UN, we prepared a series of feedback contents for these meetings to replace the face-to-face meetings agreed with the population involved, which were canceled due to the pandemic. This material was made available on the platform.
The partnership with UFRJ came about through a research project from the School of Architecture, which designed and systematized, along with the Planning Office, the results of the children's experiences.
The Secretariat of Education and MultiRio were the most active internal partners, getting involved in most of the actions with their spaces, professionals and students.
All the participation processes had the premise of disseminating their results. Due to the pandemic and thinking about everyone's well-being, a proposal for online feedback was created through the participa.rio platform, replacing the face-to-face meetings that had been planned.
The online surveys had their results made available through interactive graphics as the polls were being concluded, therefore already throughout the process.
For each face-to-face meeting, a video was made available with the objective of summarizing the process of the meetings with some highlights for each region, a document in the format of an online magazine, presenting the systematization and consolidation of the contributions received, and 9 short sequential videos with a brief presentation of the Sustainable Development Plan, its divisions, the participative process, and the results that had already been incorporated.
The compiled results, after analysis by the coordination team, were presented through a Social Participation seal, every time the seal appears throughout the Plan, it indicates that that goal or action was cited as a priority for the population or included in the plan based on the participation processes. There is also a chapter in the Plan dedicated to explaining each of the actions and the process for analyzing the results and their inclusion.
Some actions had their results presented in seminars and forums.
It is also planned to monitor the implementation of the Plan after its launch through the online platform participa.rio.
The Sustainable Development and Climate Action Plan, coordinated by the Planning Office of the Undersecretariat for Planning and Monitoring Results, was created after listening to cariocas about their hopes, priorities and aspirations for the future of the city. More than 35 thousand people participated directly in the dialogues for the future of the city in the next 30 years. Through polls on the participa.rio platform, cariocas left their contributions. Face-to-face activities were fundamental for the literal dialogue with the population. The projects included not only improvements for the city's infrastructure, but for the people who live there. In these activities, it was possible to deepen understandings, review definitions pointing to specific needs, engage and involve participants, stimulate citizenship and effectiveness in policies and planning. This decentralisation of the process sought to share responsibilities, share difficulties and together find strategies and new paths for an increasingly better city.
Understanding the challenge of reaching different profiles in such a large and multifaceted city, different strategies were created: training workshops; an online platform with different participation surveys and specific content for children and young people; face-to-face meetings with innovative dynamics; projects with the municipal education network from the children's point of view. All this was only possible thanks to key partnerships, such as UN-Habitat, C40 network, UFRJ, Municipal Secretariat of Education and MultiRio.
Launched in 2018, the participa.rio platform was an important tool for access and transparency of actions. Cariocas dived into the waves of participation, involving more than 2,500 contributions in the 04 stages open to the public.
The training workshops held with UN-Habitat in 2019 addressing Open Government themes involved more than 1300 municipal technicians and from partner institutions, representing an important driver of the participation process, since the technicians were trained and also contributed with proposals for the Plan. In a specific workshop for the municipal education network, more than a thousand employees participated at the same time, promoting a great synergy of objectives, strengthening the fundamental partnership with education. During this workshop, a competition was launched to name the character created to be "the children's friend", seeking to disseminate information on sustainable development. This contest has boosted many school activities. The involvement of students affected their families, generating more than 5,000 votes on the Platform, electing Susteco as the name of the character.
The SDP reached the schools intertwined with the activities of dissemination of the SDGs. From then on, parents, staff, local representatives and students were together in understanding and valuing the sustainable development of the city.
Also in 2019, face-to-face meetings were held involving institutions, leaders, civil society, children, youth, adults and the elderly, allowing this plan to be democratically built with popular engagement. And as a final moment, there was the direct involvement of children in the proposition of actions for the city, from the D-Day - Affective Mapping, held on November 8.
The digital platform plays an important role in this process, since it is there that all the results achieved are made available and it will be through it that the cariocas will be able to follow the implementation of the Plan.