• New Taipei

New Taipei Was Named among World’s Top 7 cities for Best Practice in Citizen Participation

The International Observatory on Participatory Democracy, IOPD, announced the names of the final candidates on 19 April for the 11th IOPD Award--Best Practice in Citizen’s Participation. This is the first time that New Taipei City participated in the award and being nominated as the top 7, the only Asian city on the list.

The experience of “Participatory Budgeting for Disabled Persons Employment Promotion in the Sanxia District”, launched by Labor Affairs Department of New Taipei City Government, stands out from 48 projects from 25 countries and will compete for the annual winner with other 6 nominated projects in the upcoming ceremony of the 11th IOPD Award in Montreal, Canada.

The commissioner of Labor Affairs Department, Hsieh Cheng-Ta says, “The project of participatory budgeting, PB, has been spreadhead by New Taipei City Government since early 2015. In order to help the disabled people acquire jobs in the market, it was the first PB including the minority groups─disabled persons─to the process of policy making and resource distribution. We cooperate with the Department of Sociology of National Taipei University and select Sanxia as an example. The district lies in the mountain and the rate of employment for the disabled is quite low. If we can succeed here, we can apply the experience easily to other areas. In the project, the proposals was generated on a comprehensive communication basis. In the end, the best proposal was elected by 410 disabled persons, which represent 14% disabled population in this area. ”

“It comes out great,” added Hsieh. "This project not only achieves the goal of ‘participation without exclusion’, a contemporary standard initiated by institutions all over the world, but also indicates a new direction to the global platform of participatory democracy. To extend this valuable experience, Labor Affairs Department will reuse this approach to enhance elderly employment, as implementations of the idea “open government”.

“Since 2015, participatory budgeting is on the agenda in New Taipei Youth Commission.” says Director General of Secretariat, Lin Chieh-Yu. “We will continuously introduce the city’s excellent policies and experiences to the international society through conventions, competitions and other channels.

“IOPD was established in 2001 and has more than 547 members, consisting of cites, organizations and academic institutions.IOPD organizes “Best Practice in Citizen Participation Award” every year and rewards the cities who promote citizen participation actively and aggressively. The event has been held for eleven years. Also, there is another award for individuals. This year the best individual nominees are from the United States, Madagascar, Bolivia, France, Italy and Spain. IOPD are scheduled to hold its annual conference in Montreal, Canada, from 16 to 19 June, 2017. Moreover, the award ceremony will take place on the afternoon of June 19 to announce the award-winning city.