Participatory Budgeting

International trend, local possibilities

Date: April 11, 2011, 4-5:30 pm

Location: Springfield Technical Community  College, Scibelli Hall (Bldg 2), 7th Floor

Contact: Aron Goldman, 413-218-7865,

Presenters: Chicago Alderman Joe Moore; Prof. Gianpaolo Baiocchi (Brown Univ., Participatory Budgeting Project); Springfield City Council President José Tosado; Michaelann Bewsee (Arise for Social Justice); Governor Patrick's Deputy Director for Community Affairs, Lori Nelson (invited).

The Springfield Institute, groups from Amherst Collee, and Springfield Technical Community College will showcase an innovative international model called Participatory Budgeting, and local, regional, and state officials and community leaders will consider the value of such a model for their own constituents. This event will provide a distinctive opportunity for collaboration between academic institutions, elected officials, and community organizations to discuss the prospect of implementing a practical model to increase citizen participation in municipal budgeting in Springfield and the region. Audience interaction will follow.

First developed in Brazil, Participatory Budgeting (PB) has spread throughout Latin America and has been implemented in over 1,000 municipalities worldwide. But it has only recently arrived in the US-in Chicago's 49tth Ward. Chicago Alderman Joe Moore, named the "Most Valuable Local Official" in the country by The Nation, will share his experience implementing PB in his ward. (Over 1,600 residents came together to directly decide how to allocate a $1.3 million discretionary budget.) Brazillian PB expert from Brown University, Gianpaolo Baiocchi, will briefly provide some international context. Then Joe Moore will recount the experience of the 49th Ward, and a panel of local leaders will react and take questions and comments from audience members.

All are welcome.


Event Sponsors: Amherst College's Copeland Colloquium and the Center for Community Engagement, The Springfield Institute, The Roosevelt Institute, and Springfield Technical Community College.

posted by Emily Kawano
Exec. Dir., Center for Popular Economics & Solidarity Economy Network