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Title / Titel:

Including Citizen Participation Formats for Drafting and Implementing Local Sustainable Development Strategies.

Author / Autor:

Christine Meschede und Agnes Mainka

Source / Quelle:

Journal of Urban Science, 4(1), pp. 1-19

Language / Sprache:




Since the publication of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, governance for sustainable development has grown and several national, regional and local sustainable development strategies have been adopted. A sustainable development strategy can serve as a political control instrument and management tool. For the development and implementation of such a strategy at the local level, municipalities might use citizen participation approaches. There exist manifold ways of consulting civil society, representing different levels of decision-making power. The analysis of this article is divided into two parts. First, we report on a case study of the pilot project “Global Sustainable Municipalities” located in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany and assess the current status of the use of citizen participation formats for adopting a local sustainable development strategy. Second, we developed a model of citizen participation approaches during different phases of adopting a sustainable development strategy. The purpose of this model is to assess the potential decision-making power of citizens during the phases and to help municipalities to get an orientation on participation possibilities. The results show that most municipalities count on participation mainly in the implementation phase of the strategy, less during developing it. Our model, however, demonstrates participation possibilities for each of the phases.

Keywords: citizen participation; decision-making; Germany; smart sustainable municipalities; sustainable development goals; sustainable development strategy

https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci4010013 (Open Access)