Democratic wellbeing means that we all have a voice in decisions that affect us. It’s about recognising that wellbeing cannot be done to people. It must be done by and with them.
A lack of trust is undermining democracy and its institutions. This will be compounded if existing and new efforts to adopt more forms of participatory democracy are unable to deliver change and demonstrate impact.
We would like to strengthen our understanding of participatory democracy’s contribution to democratic wellbeing in the UK. At Carnegie UK, we have been exploring what the barriers and enablers are to more and better participatory democracy in Scotland. This will help us to understand the role that we can play between participatory democracy and the institutions charged with enacting change.
As part of this exciting programme of work, we are establishing a group of ‘Democratic Wellbeing Champions’ from anywhere in the UK to offer input and advice as the work progresses between now and December.
The Democratic Wellbeing Champions will be a group of up to twelve individuals with diverse experience of trying to influence policy across wellbeing, democracy, community organising and social change. We expect participation to involve a mix of 1-to-1 discussions, online and/or in-person coffee catch-ups, and smaller group work. We will be flexible with our methodology depending on input sought and individual preferences but anticipate the time commitment to be participation in two or three meetings between September and December 2023.
Interested? Send an email to [email protected] and in no more than 250 words, tell us what you think are the current possibilities and/or limitations of participatory democracy in delivering change.
If you have any questions about what’s involved, please get in touch with Hannah on [email protected].
There is a budget available to offer one-off grants to individuals and small charitable organisations to cover their contribution to the project where unpaid participation is a barrier. Please let us know at the time of application if you would like to take up this opportunity.
This open call will close on Wednesday 6th September at 12noon.