Our latest thoughts & news

Our staff and members contribute to the growing discussion on modernising democracy. Discover some of our recent contributions here.

How can citizen voices advance digital rights?

The Citizen Voices for Digital Rights programme was funded by the City Coalition for Digital Rights and engaged the cities of Amsterdam, Bordeaux, Milan and Tirana. It sought to address the role of digital technologies and develop a practical approach to improve the active participation of citizens in data collection, data governance and knowledge creation. It also sought to co-design pathways for citizens to advocate for their own, and their communities', digital rights.

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Scotland Open Government National Action Plan public workshop reports 2021

Over July-August 2021, Democratic Society designed and delivered a series of Open Government public engagement workshops to capture thoughts and feedback from the public on what should be included in the National Action Plan commitments. These workshop reports with outcomes and summary of participants valuable feedback on the different thematic commitment areas are available now. These thematic areas are on democracy & participation, climate, health & social care, financial transparency, digital & data and one youth specific session.

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Guide to Deliberation: Participatory Budgeting

Deliberative approaches can enable participants to go deeper in considering choices than using proposal submissions, idea generation or voting alone. They bring together a diverse group of people to learn about an issue, share and hear different perspectives, discuss options, consider trade-offs, and ultimately reach informed and considered decisions about priorities for spending. They bring additional benefits by building community knowledge, confidence and connection to decision-making. This guide is aimed at people involved in the design and delivery of participatory budgeting processes in Scotland, though its content is relevant for people working anywhere. It is intended to be multi-scale - you could be working for a local authority to mainstream PB or supporting a community group in Scotland with small grants. Whatever your context, we hope that it will provide inspiration on what’s possible.

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Beyond Government: Democracy in Trade Unions

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Supporting community access to digital participatory budgeting tools in Scotland Report 2021

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Scotland's Open Government public idea generation workshops

Join us for Scotland's Open Government idea generation public workshops (5 topics around climate, data & digital, financial transparency, democracy & participation and health & social care), which will be fed into Scotland’s Open Government National Action Plan. These will be held at the end of July 2021. Application form: https://bit.ly/3hscXAi

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Scotland Democracy Lab- report

Read our report findings from the Scotland Democracy Lab event held on 30th April around trust in government throughout the pandemic and the role of the media.

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Youth-led Participatory Budgeting in North Ayrshire

We spoke to Donna Anderson, Participation and Democracy Officer and Youth Work Lead for North Ayrshire Council about the youth-led PB processes happening in North Ayrshire.

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