General Assembly

It’s made up of all IOPD members and it’s the sovereign body of the organization.

Coordinating committee

It’s made up of the Presidency, the General Secretary and the Regional Offices. It leads the IOPD in the assemblies period.


The presidency has the function of institutional and political leadership and representation of the network. It is composed of:

  • The president: the elected official of the city organising the conference in the current year.
  • The co-president: the elected official of the city that organised the conference in the previous year.
  • The co-president for gender equality: an elected woman holds this co-chair for the promotion of gender equality.

General Secretary

A local government which is an IOPD member holds it for a 3-year-period and it is renewable and it comprises the IOPD Technical Secretary. Its functions are, on the one hand, to manage the IOPD webpage, the experiences bank, the resources bank, the activities calendar and the news section; and on the other hand, to coordinate the IOPD activities, the different Regional Offices, and to represent the IOPD before various authorities it has links with.

Promoters Members

The Promoters Members are local or regional governments that make a financial contribution substantial to the OIDP and are part of the steering committee. The promoting members are currently:

  • the city of Grenoble (France)
  • the city of Montreal (Canada)
  • the city of Valongo (Portugal)
  • the city of Lyon (France)
  • the city of São Paulo (Brazil)
  • the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (Sweden)

Standing Scientific Committee

Formed by a group of experts in deliberative and participatory democracy as well as in urbanism, municipalism and the IOPD's field of work, this committee will advise the IOPD on its activities and projects.

Adopted at the 2023 Assembly, work is currently underway to configure its composition.

Regional Offices

Offices responsible for the IOPD in a specific geographical area. Their functions are to represent IOPD, to look for new members and to forge alliances with regional organizations.

The IOPD currently has the following active Regional Office:

José Manuel Ribeiro

President IOPD 2024
Co-President IOPD 2025

Mayor of Valongo

José Manuel Ribeiro has been Mayor of Valongo since 2013. He holds a degree in International Relations, with an MBA in Business Management - specialisation in Marketing from the Catholic University of Porto. He has diversified professional experience in both the public and private sectors, both nationally and internationally. He is a member of the staff of the Portuguese Agency for Investment and Foreign Trade (AICEP).

Eduardo Paes

IOPD president in 2023
IOPD Co-President in 2024

Mayor of Rio de Janeiro

Eduardo da Costa Paes is a Brazilian politician who was the mayor of the city of Rio de Janeiro from 2009 to 2012, re-elected for a second term from 2013 to 2016 and returning elected again in 2021. He is currently the 13th mayor of Rio de Janeiro. In November 2023 the city of Rio de Janeiro hosted the 22nd IOPD Conference.

Nelly Ouassenan

Co-president of the OIDP for gender equality 2023-2025

2nd Deputy Mayor of Cocody

Nelly Patricia Awa Ouassenan is a company lawyer and a graduate of Abidjan Law School. She is Administrative and Legal Director of a life insurance company in Côte d'Ivoire. She has also been Deputy Mayor of Cocody in the Autonomous District of Abidjan since 2018. She was the organiser of the 20th OIDP conference, held in Abidjan in 2021, which focused on promoting participatory democracy to build sustainable cities.