On behalf of the Senate Department for Urban Development and Housing and the Mitte district office of Berlin, we are realising digital citizen participation: The "Voices at the push of a button" project collected ideas via voice messages for the new town hall of the future in Berlin-Mitte.
Cities are breeding grounds for social change - both due to their high population density and their diversity. Urban spaces and neighbourhoods quickly become spaces for experimentation and learning for social, cultural, technical and economic innovations. Increasing conflicts over space and utilisation require a productive and understanding-oriented debate between the various interest groups in order to jointly develop sustainable solutions for future coexistence.
We are convinced that strengthening participation on the ground not only leads to sustainable urban development, but also contributes to a trusting culture of discussion and cooperative networking. After all, the major urban policy challenges of the future can only be overcome by working together. Viable solutions for sustainable urban development require close and democratically organized cooperation between all stakeholders.
We use special multi-stakeholder formats such as the Trialogue ® of the Berlin Governance Platform in our urban development projects to network stakeholders from politics and administration, business and organised civil society as well as academia. We organise a systematic exchange for the synergy of city-related research and urban society actors in order to develop new solutions and explore joint options for action.
After more than ten years of vacancy, the site on Karl-Marx-Allee is being developed for the common good - jointly by civil society and the public sector. Over the next ten years, the new town hall for the Mitte district of Berlin is to be built here, a town hall of the future.
Voices at the touch of a button makes citizens' voices heard. Literally. From 18.01. to 12.03.2021, citizens were able to register via the website www.stimmenaufknopfdruck.de to join the conversation about the new town hall for the Mitte district of Berlin via voice message.
Citizens were asked to contribute their ideas to the design - from questions of architecture and interaction with the administration to the design of the town hall as a symbolic public space. The process formed the basis for the subsequent architectural competition in the further planning process. Neighbourhoods, future users of the town hall, experts, founders of the initiative and the pioneers of the Haus der Statistik model project as well as the entire urban community were addressed.
In addition to the PR activation by the consumers, the necessary attention was ensured by accompanying articles in the local press and social media, direct mailings to residents and a video display on site. The voice messages sent in were then analysed and visualised using social science methods. The results were also summarised in a series of short podcast episodes set to music. True to the motto: voices at the touch of a button.
Voices at the push of a button is a joint project of the Berlin Governance Platform, the ZUsammenKUNFT Berlin eG and the media agency FREIHEIT Group GmbH on behalf of the District Office Mitte of Berlin and the Berlin Senate Department for Urban Development and Housing.
2020 – 2021
ZUsammenKUNFT Berlin eG, media agency FREIHEIT Gruppe GmbH