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What is Participatory Budgeting?

Participatory budgeting directly involves local people in making decisions on the spending and priorities for a defined public budget.

LutonParticipatory budgeting (PB) allows the citizens of an area (neighbourhood, regeneration or local authority area) to participate in the allocation of part of the local Council’s or other statutory agency's (health services, police) available financial resources. PB aims to increase transparency, accountability, understanding and social inclusion in local government affairs. PB applies to a varying amount of the local Council’s budget and the actual process is developed to suit local circumstances.

In practice, PB provides citizens with information that enables them to be engaged in prioritising the needs of their neighbourhoods propose and debate new services and projects and set budgets in a democratic and transparent way. As the process becomes embedded it involves citizens being engaged in an annual budgetary cycle of setting priorities and budgets and monitoring the delivery of projects and services

What we mean by participatory budgeting:

Participatory budgeting directly involves local people in making  decisions on the spending and priorities for a defined public budget.  PB processes can be defined by geographical area (whether that’s neighbourhood or larger) or by theme.  This means engaging residents and community groups representative of all parts of the community  to discuss and vote on spending priorities, make spending proposals, and vote on them, as well giving local people a role in the scrutiny and monitoring of the process and results to inform subsequent PB decisions.

To learn more about participatory budgeting please have a look at the other pages in this section.


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Copyright 2007, by the Contributing Authors. Cite/attribute Resource. admin. (2008, March 28). What is Participatory Budgeting?. Retrieved October 21, 2011, from Participatory Budgeting Unit Web site: All Rights Reserved.