Future Cities: About the Project

Financed by the German Foreign Ministry, the project Future Cities: For Participation in Urban Development” (short: Future Cities)is a bilateral venture between the Belarussian Union of Architects (BUA) and the HUMBOLDT-VIADRINA Governance Platform which aims to deepen the understanding of citizen participation within the urban development context of both Minsk and Berlin.

Future Cities aims to connect German and Belarusian experts in urban development and citizen participation in order to empower them to contribute their knowledge to the current political discussions in both cities.

Processes of citizen participation in urban and regional development have recently ignited in both cities. In 2018 alone, state agencies in Minsk planned more than 60 public discussions on selected urban planning projects. The mayor of Minsk recently called for more dialogue with citizens in urban development.

In Berlin, a process for participation was initiated in 2017 with the involvement of local actors. As a result, the local state administration developed guidelines for citizen participation in a participation process with the city society. Additionally, the state-owned housing companies have developed their own guidelines for citizen participation using the Trialog method.

The project aims to support the exchange of stakeholder expertise on challenges, experiences, risks and solutions of good citizen participation in urban development processes. In Minsk, where participation processes are still in their infancy, there is a need for better implementation of the legally anchored principles of public participation and sustainable development by the local administration. In the long term, the establishment of sustainable and sustainable participation practices in urban development can generally contribute to a better quality of life for the whole population.

The project consists of a Partner Exchange in Minsk (May 2019), a three-day programme with a Trialog in Minsk (Autumn 2019) and a final Partner Visit to Berlin (November 2019).

The Trialog will give stakeholders from organized civil society, politics and administration and industry a platform to discuss sustainable urban development. These experts and relevant actors who are active in the field of urban development are invited to exchange ideas and build fruitful relationships. Thus, German and Belarussian experts in urban development and citizen participation can contribute their knowledge to the local city discussions and provide solutions for both cities.

The final project results are published in a brochure February 2020. The publication will include practical advice on how to foster and engage in fruitful participatory processes. The brochure aims to strengthen the role of civil society in urban development.

Urban Development
Participation and Inclusion

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