The main objective of this project is to focus on initiatives that promote citizens’ e-participation at the local level in order to answer to the following question: “To what extent are social media being used by municipalities to promote and advertise opportunities for civic engagement (e.g. e-voting, e-consultation, crowdsourcing, crowdfunding, co-creation and co-production of public services, urban planning etc.)?”.
In specific, the goal is to investigate the role of municipalities as promoters of these initiatives, by understanding the adoption and uses of digital media and technologies for civic engagement (as dissemination and/or advertising tools, for instance).
The goal is to identify, classify and evaluate initiatives that promote citizens’ e-participation at the local level using Portugal as case study, which will be done through a combination of automated text analysis and manual coding of social media posts of each municipality.
It is a priority for this research project to make the results of the study widely and publicly visible and available, as well as to submit them to collective discussion and evaluation with the local representatives. To this end, a Facebook account will be created and regularly updated to serve as a means of disseminating news, case studies and good practices in the area, as well as simulating visual and interactive representations of our findings.
This project is inscribed in Research Line 4 of UNU-EGOV, which analyses local government actions and policies in order to determine the quality of their digital democracy efforts and ensure their sustainability.