Resources on citizen participation

Citizen participation is in the spotlight: articles, publications, manifestos...

The impact of elections around the world:

  • Democratic Audit: Elections and COVID-19: making democracies work in uncertain times (article).
  • Swissinfo: Comment la pandémie affecte les démocraties du monde entier (article in French).
  • International IDEA: Global overview of COVID-19: Impact on elections (report). 
  • International IDEA: The Impact of COVID-19 on Transitional Elections and Peacebuilding (opinion piece).
  • Le Figaro: Élections: 58 pays ont choisi de reporter leurs scrutins à cause du Covid-19 (article in French).


Local / regional governance - Media:

  • Le Temps: Ne pas oublier le dévouement des élus locaux (editorial in French).
  • CityMayors: Mayors fighting the CoronaVirus (article).
  • The Guardian: Germany's devolved logic is helping it win the coronavirus race (article).
  • El País: Los Ayuntamientos, el primer frente contra el virus (article in Spanish).
  • Le Monde: " Les acteurs de la santé publique doivent être davantage associés à l'urbanisme " (article in French).
  • Next City: From the Covid-19 Crisis to Rebuilding our Public Technology Infrastructure in Local Government (article). 
  • Next City: Cities Turn to Virtual Tools to Stay Connected With Their Citizens (article). 
  • El País: Ciudades por una salida solidaria a la crisis (opinion piece in Spanish). 
  • Nonprofit Quarterly: COVID-19 Shutdown Freezes Out Citizen Ballot Initiatives (article).
  • A Frontline Guide for Local Decision-Makers (guide).
  • Le Monde: Coronavirus : les finances de collectivités locales virent au rouge (article in French).
  • The Conversation: Cities are at centre of coronavirus pandemic – understanding this can help build a sustainable, equal future (article).
  • France Culture: Du retour de l'Etat au retour des collectivités ? (podcast in French).
  • Le Monde: Appel de 19 présidents de régions et collectivités territoriales : " Pour la relance et la reconstruction, nous sommes prêts ! " (article in French).
  • Euractiv: Face au COVID-19, quelle réponse l'UE peut-elle apporter aux territoires ? (article in French).
  • Le Monde: Projets urbains : la participation citoyenne à l'épreuve du réel (article in French).
  • Le Monde has published a series of interviews with local leaders around the world to describe how they are dealing with the post-COVID era. Below are the cities covered, in order of appearance: Barcelona, San Francisco, Kigali, Manchester, Seoul, Florence, Abidjan, Montreal, Budapest, Bogota, Bangkok, Tokyo, Madrid and Mexico City (in French).


Local / regional governance - Institutional:

  • Thomson Reuters Foundation: Local governments are in the frontline of coronavirus response (opinion piece).
  • World Economic Forum: How cities around the world are handling COVID-19 - and why we need to measure their preparedness (article).
  • Union for the Mediterranean: Local and regional authorities at the forefront of the COVID-19 pandemic (communiqué).
  • Global Platform for the Right to the City: El Derecho a la Ciudad para enfrentar al COVID-19 (campaign)
  • South African Local Government Association: How a Councillor should lead during the COVID-19 crisis (statement).
  • South African Local Government Association: Local Government's Role in Combatting COVID-19 (article).
  • South African Government: SALGA assesses local government's contribution to curbing the spread of Coronavirus COVID-19 (media statement).
  • Inter-American Development Bank: ¿Cómo mitigar la propagación del coronavirus en los asentamientos informales durante la emergencia y recuperación ante la pandemia? (article in Spanish).
  • Inter-American Development Bank: Haciendo frente al coronavirus desde el campo de batalla: las ciudades (article in Spanish).
  • UN-Habitat: COVID-19 Response Plan (publication).
  • OECD: COVID-19: time for gender inclusive decision-making (blog post).
  • Le Monde: Aides économiques, plan de relocalisation... Face à la crise, les régions sonnent la mobilisation (article in French).


Democracy, the right to information and participation: 

  • International Foundation for Electoral Systems: Emergency Powers and the COVID-19 Pandemic: Protecting Democratic Guardrails (article).
  • The Globe and Mail: When viruses threaten, the strongest disinfectant is democracy (opinon piece).
  • Universitat de Barcelona: Pandemics meet democracy: Experimental evidence from the COVID-19 crisis in Spain (paper). 
  • Deutsche Welle: El fin del siglo estadounidense y el regreso de la tentación autoritaria (article in Spanish).
  • International Democracy Community: Do we have to worry about democracy? (article). 
  • Public Media Alliance: Coronavirus and local public media (article).
  • Brookings: Citical in a public health crisis, COVID-19 has hit local newsrooms hard (article).
  • NPR: Pandemic Threatens Local Papers Even As Readers Devour Their Coverage (article).
  • Upper Chamber of the Kingdom of the Netherlands: the Senate approved the urgent law on digital decision-making for local authorities (read summary in Dutch here). The government, together with the the Association of Dutch Municipalities and other local authorities have launched a website called "Coronavirus and local democracy", with plenty of resouces. 
  • El País: El coronavirus, 'test de estrés' al estado de derecho (article in Spanish).
  • Boston Review: COVID-19 Requires More Democracy, Not Less (article).
  • Human Rights and Democracy Network: COVID-19 (resource compilation).
  • Global Platform for the Right to the City: Minutes from the GPR2C Assemblies: Right to the City facing COVID-19 (online sessions).
  • Open Government Partnership: Open response, open recovery (special site).
  • Swissnfo: Back to a new normal: democracy waking from Covid-19 hibernation (article).
  • Involve UK: What role should the public play in the COVID-19 recovery? A democratic response to COVID-19 (research project).
  • International IDEA: Democracy as truth: Why democracies are better at preventing pandemics (article).
  • Involve UK: Why Participation and Deliberation are Vital to the COVID-19 Response (article).
  • IDEA International: La Pandemia con Daniel Zovatto. Impacto de la pandemia en la calidad de la democracia (webinar in Spanish).
  • Décider Ensemble: Revue des initiatives de consultation citoyenne (study in French).
  • Traditional democracies can't talk properly about COVID-19. It's time to innovate (Tom Steinberg's blog).
  • Citizen Participation during the Covid Pandemic: Insights from Local Practices in European Cities (publication in English)


Citizen solidarity and community organisations:


Reflections and the future: 


Other compilations: