Louise O’Kane and Jez Hall interviewed for German Participatory Budgeting website

Journalist Stephanie Grimm speaks with Louise O’Kane of Community Places and Jez Hall of Shared Future CIC on behalf of the Buergerhaushalt website, on the past present and future for Participatory Budgeting in the UK.

Buergerhaushalt is Germany’s online portal for participatory budgeting and related issues, to enable anyone interested to obtain basic information on participatory budgeting (PB), or find out more about current PB projects in the German-speaking countries and worldwide. Users can obtain practical tips and materials for implementing PB, and lessons learned by other expert PB practitioners.

Would you like to know more about the important role of voting, the involvement of young people who are far removed from politics and the effects of austerity policy?
Then take a full look at the interview.

“If a young person is sent to prison in the UK following a misdemeanour or offence, it costs the government between £70,000 and £80,000 p.a. – about the same amount as it would cost to educate that young person over a period of 10 years. Participatory budgeting can open up opportunities to ensure that this does not happen.”

This compelling example by Jez Hall, Director of Shared Future CIC in Manchester, shows not only how important participatory budgeting is for the younger generation in particular, but also how difficult it can be for such civic participation processes to challenge long-existing structures.

Together with Louise O’Kane, Planning and Engagement Officer at Community Places in Belfast, he gives an insight into the history of Participatory Budgeting in the UK, future opportunities and the possible tension between PB organisers and government, as well as working within bureaucratic structures.

Watch the full interview on the Buergerhaushalt website