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Development of the strategic framework for Citizen Participation of the Island of Tenerife

  • Spain
  • Tenerife Island's Government (Cabildo de Tenerife)
This experience was presented as candidate for the 9th IOPD Award for Best Practices in Citizen Participation in 2015.


This paper's main objective is to promote the articulation of citizen participation on the island of Tenerife in a collaborative, participatory and consensual, through the approach of shares and the establishment of working groups and networks of participation that will define its development.
Taking as reference the guiding document of strategic lines of participation and with the information obtained and discussed during the participatory process of developing the Strategic Framework alongside the social agents involved, a document for action arises, in order to implement document the overall strategic lines that define this framework.
Its content consists of proposals, guidelines and recommendations that are based on input gathered during the development of the Strategic Framework. It is designed for both in order to respond, through the approach of specific actions, observations, comments and solutions that have raised / as different participants in the process and in order that they can see reflected in this document their participation and indispensable role in the insular participation model being defined.

In the sense noted, the actions proposed in the document are designed to answer the causes that agents perceive as triggers of the drawbacks or problems related to participation, both from the point of view of citizenship as the protagonist of participation, and from the point of view of management by the other agents.

Among these causes are some as the lack of spaces, channels and appropriate tools to facilitate the participation of all actors; disappointment, frustration and lack of citizenship with governance; the lack of commitments / as public officials and monitoring of promised actions; lack of sufficient training and counseling; excessive red tape and lack of coordination; ignorance of matters that are managed from the administrations and the results thereof; lack of transparency; the need for homogeneous concepts of citizen participation; individualism of modern society, etc. (For more information consult the memory of the participatory process for the preparation of the Strategic Framework, published in the platform).

Moreover, this document is designed with the intention of launching its guidelines and initiatives proposed with the collaboration and involvement of individuals and entities to which it is addressed, as well as carry out the consensus, monitoring and updates that are measured necessary, depending on the progress and results that are generated and agents which are added during the process.
This flexible character seeks to address the need for adaptation required to manage participatory processes, both locally and insular, where there are, firstly, clearly defined and embedded features, which have to be considered alongside the economic and sociological changes that are causing adaptations to new customs, needs and demands of an increasingly plural and interested in the management of public affairs population.

Participation key construction tool of the Framework generates a methodological process articulated from a series of basic lines of development, ensuring efficiency at the time of ordering discussion and teamwork.

These baselines are seen as strategic guidelines that mandate the co-
affiliated dynamic and developed during the participatory process of developing the Framework.
The strategic lines of action defined guidelines that must be developed to approximate the model Participation of the Framework, are consistent with its principles and its rationale, grouped thematically different but with a common area and facilitate reflection, debate and prioritizing the challenges and actions from the participation and consensus decide to implement.

This participatory model proposes seven strategic lines: Regulation, Culture of Participation, Training, Management and Methodology, Processes and Channels, Development and Volunteer Associative Tissue and Communication.
The Regulation covers the management frame of reference in Citizen Participation and includes the contributions of the area covered from the Constitution to the most recent laws and regulations, which are projected at different territorial frameworks and involving a basic and mandatory reference when propose actions and participatory processes. The Strategic Framework walks in conjunction with this legislation and legally guarantees the participation model it contains. The overall objective of this strategic line in the Framework is to promote actions related to the analysis, review and discussion, as well as the proposal to update current regulations, may include new forms of participation, depending on what you want delimiting the regulations.

The Culture of Participation as a strategic line involves issues as open as the attitudes, values, experience and knowledge you have on the Participation and influence the opinion that people internalize on it. This line is to promote a model of governance that fosters participatory processes, counting as a key factor, with the participation of government, citizen organizations, citizens not associated in developing them, and also taking into account mainstreaming, transparency, diversity, individual differences and multiculturalism.

Training is as strategic line almost compulsory participation in this model. The formation is manifested as a necessity demanded by all who participated in the Framework, resulting key factor for the successful design of any process or dynamic action and its subsequent deployment, enrichment, assessment, monitoring and expansion. The overall objective of this line in the Framework is to promote training plans and related Citizen Participation, for staff of the Public Administrations, to Citizen Entities and citizens not associated advice.
Management and Methodology is a basic strategic line, as the methodological and operational aspects of participation related to how to conduct participatory processes, promote, develop and redirect group dynamics are prioritized, the ability to summarize and return information, issues all that management make participation more effective and productive. This line provides the framework using participatory methodologies with local and insular, concrete projection and built consensus with citizens and adapted to economic, social and cultural reality of the environment.
Processes and Channels of Participation as a strategic line of Framework understood from the priority issues related to the different communication channels and different
levels of participation and leadership, the degree of coordination in participatory processes and the processes themselves participatory related to the territory, population and community setting targets for community involvement and social participation.
Promoting Associative and Volunteering Tissue has been defined as an important strategic line, meaning that the development of democratic societies revolves around working together, can become dynamization of social change, social cohesion and progress of society. Do not forget that the association is a reflection of society itself.

With these premises volunteerism is enhanced, since its existence arises from the concerns of society, the spirit of solidarity and transformers to build a democratic society.
For all these reasons, it is considered that the support to strengthen and articulate citizens and voluntary organizations are essential, meaning audiences / participants as keys and execution of actions.
The Communication of Citizen Participation is a key strategic line that will allow visualize the different participatory processes, methodologies, actions of participation and will improve the conceptual idea of citizen participation and building trust to communicate the results.