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Accountability of the Foral Deputation of Bizkaia

  • This experience was presented at the 11th IOPD Award


From the Foral Deputation of Bizkaia (FDB), through the public accountability we pursue two objectives: on one hand, to open an space of citizen participation, and on the other hand, get people know what FDB is doing and which efforts is making in each of different counties and submit it to public scrutiny in a continuous and systematic way during the Strategic Plan Bizkaia Goazen 2030.

This process consists in three principal phases: elaboration of Management Plan, Territory Diagnosis Participation and Devolution. Also, in a transversal way, there is a constant work of evaluation of the process in an internal level (FDB civil servants) and external (citizenship and participation agents).

Elaboration of Management Plan (Bizakaia Goazen 2030)

The strategic document, with 120 organized actions in 4 strategic axis and 17 objectives. Each of the actuation has it’s owns indicators (impact, result, process…). Once a year a report is published including the indicators and a description of the progress.

In parallel, to get a wider and plural participation, we have created the network “Bizkaitarren Sarea”, a network of people and entities of the territory interested in take part in the participative process of FDB. It consists on a platform to make diffusion to all kind of participate initiatives. Any person individually or an entity or SMEs can participate in this network (free access and publicized in web and public media). This network gives the principal support to the convocations.

Territory Diagnosis

Before the launching of the process, a diagnosis of all the Territory is done. For this, we use quantitative research (macro survey of territory) and participation talks in each of the counties to get to know the principal characteristics, problems and expectations they have.

With all this information we prepare all the meetings, where we prioritize the bill of lading of projects and actuations identified as the most relevant for the people of each county, projects of general impact and projects smaller impact. We always bring documents and any theme can be discussed, but the idea is to make easier the access to information and most remarkable themes so we try to prepare the information as detailed as it’s possible, with the collaboration of all departments giving detailed data of their services.


The meetings have an average duration of 2.30h and are made in public centers. For all the meetings we prepare complete documentation in folders to give to each participant.

The General Deputy (the political representative of the Deputation) attends to the meeting, as a principal responsible of Foral Management, and is the only Foral Representative that attends to the meeting (apart from the facilitator). The General Deputy is the one who intervenes at the beginning giving account of the Foral management, in a general and specific level of projects.

After this first intervention, people participate in organized tables around interesting themes (for example themes related to social services, public transportation, economic and employment promotion). During this time, the General Deputy walks around all the tables so as anyone can pose doubts, complaints, proposals...The object of the meeting is that citizens can make contributions.

All participants have a form where they can address directly to the General Deputy to talk about any theme of interest that hasn’t been talked during the meeting.

100 people of each county goes to the meeting (until now, this number of people has never been overcome, if it happens we would do more than one meeting per county). We always seek for the plurality of participants: age, gender, profile (individual, association, SMEs…) and city (each county has between 8 and 12 cities).


The evaluation of the meetings is done in three different ways:

1.Evaluation sheet that everyone can complete at the end of the meeting. It contains a general valuation and improving proposals.

2.Three big urns to introduce color balls depending of the feeling when they end up the meeting (red: bad, orange: regular, green: good).

3.The following days (2-3) a complete evaluation form is sent to the participants where they can value the dynamic, information, satisfaction of expectative, functionality…


The devolution of each meeting is done during the month later. It is done by email to all participants and the results are uploaded in the webpage (act, photography’s and information).

In parallel, a complete treatment of the data of process is done. All the results and information prepared are systematized using analytic and visualization tools.

* The Foral Deputation of Bizkaia is the governing body of the historic territory of Bizkaia. In addition to the ordinary powers exercised by the provincial councils of the other provinces of Spain (coordinate and help the local governments), the Provincial Council of Bizkaia exercises specific powers derived from its nature as historical territory of the Basque Country, by virtue of its Statute of Autonomy and the 1983 Law of Historical Territories.