WeGovNow is a three year research and innovation project focusing on civic participation in local government. It aims to change the relationship between citizens and local governments, transforming the citizen’s role from customer into partner. This is to be achieved with the development of an integrated community engagement platform, where citizens can interact with their governments and participate in local decision-making.
The platform will allow people to report local community problems and explore ways of solving them through collective action. It addresses the current limitations of e-participation by encouraging citizens to debate, develop and vote on concrete policy suggestions.
With our expertise in participatory mapping and community engagement, Mapping for Change are involved in developing the interactive map component of the WeGovNow platform through a user centred design approach.
The project is funded by Horizon 2020, the European Framework Programme for Research and Innovation and it will include case studies in the London Borough of Southwark, City of Turin, and San Dona di Piave, Italy. In developing the platform, partners are collaborating with multiple stakeholders such as representatives from local authorities, public service providers, citizens and action groups as well as local enterprises.
Mapping for Change in collaboration with the Humanities Education Centre (HEC) and local specialist on learning and ‘place’ Maggie Hewitt, worked with three schools in Tower Hamlets (Columbia School Community Map, Arnhem Wharf School Community Map and John Scurr School Community Map) to pilot a brand new process in which Year 4 pupils develop personalised maps of their local area with their own likes, memories and views on change.
There are around 30,000 Gypsies and Travellers in London. Their culture and traditions have developed through a nomadic way of life over centuries. However, across the country the community face an uncertain future. With some of the poorest social outcomes of any group in Britain the burgeoning cuts to public services will have a disproportionate effect on the community.
In 2009, Mapping for Change supported communities across London to measure and map local air quality. Use of a ‘citizen science’ approach meant local residents in seven locations were able to collect data, then see the real results of their monitoring activities, and subsequently embark on a campaign to see the serious results addressed.