Ever since this pandemic started we have seen many municipalities switch to online participation meetings, because getting together physically is simply no longer possible due to the covid-19 restrictions. But you still want a proper dialogue with your citizens and ensure these meetings are not reduced to a one-directional discussion with little added value in the end.
Zoom, WebEx, ClickMeeting or Teams help to engage participants to some extent, but a growing number of municipalities opt for participation tool QandR for the extra interactivity that really involves all participants in the discussion. A recent example was when the municipality of Amsterdam used QandR in an online meeting for local residents. Check the video below (in Dutch) for a detailed impression of the meeting, or read on below the video.
In suburb Amsterdam Zuidoost there are plans to build 80 units of social housing next to the Echtenstein apartment building, with a range of collective amenities and a redevelopment of the public space. This project is in a three-year preparatory phase (2019-2022) that involves local residents in the process of deciding what their neighborhood should end up looking like. If all goes according to plan, construction is scheduled to commence in 2022.
In an online meeting, Judith Iddekinge, project manager for the ‘E-district’, discussed the plans with local residents and queried them on their wishes and ideas. ClickMeeting was the communication tool of choice, and QandR allowed residents to use their phones to intuitively express their opinions on the various topics. For example, they had been asked beforehand to make or find photos to represent their ideal picture of the redeveloped public space. During the meeting they were able to submit these photos to a QandR moodboard on the central screen.
Various other work formats of QandR’s were used as well to allow residents to share their points of view on the various aspects. Such as the dilemma (participants move their dot to position their opinion), poll (multiple choice question), wordcloud (brainstorm with key words) and grading (grade a concept) modules. Responses and visualized opinions were the starting point for further discussion in the group. All in all useful information for the municipality, and for resident a hands-on experience that generated a real sense of involvement in and joint ownership of the intended development. See below for samples (in Dutch).
Both municipalities and consulting firms use QandR to engage citizens and experts in spatial planning challenges. Read more about this on our page about citizen participation.