Posts by Josh Lerner

Why we need participatory budgeting now

Is this the best we can do? A democracy where key decisions about our schools, immigration, and health are made without those who are most impacted? We urgently need to defend our neighbors whose lives are threatened by government policy. At the same time, we need to fix the broken democracy that leads to these…

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Links and Resources

Participatory Budgeting has captured the imagination of policy makers, political activists and academics. The list of organizations, resource sites, and advocates of participatory budgeting is extremely varied, and runs all the way from “socialists for participatory budgeting” in Buenos Aires to the Bertelsmann foundation, in Germany, which advocates transparency and free markets. The academic literature…

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Examples of PB

There are hundreds of municipalities and institutions implementing PB, and it is impossible to keep track of them all.  The following is the best available running tally of programs that are or can be described as participatory budgeting.  Please email us if you know of others. Latin America Argentina – Brazil – Chile – Dominican…

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History of PB

Citizen participation in budget making is not a new idea. For over 300 years, citizens in New England and elsewhere have decided on budget spending through town meetings. Many cities have involved residents in budgeting through community boards, councils, and public consultations. In 1989, the Brazilian city of Porto Alegre developed a different model of…

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What is PB?

Participatory budgeting (PB) is a democratic process in which community members directly decide how to spend part of a public budget. There are over 1,200 participatory budgets around the world, according to the Worldwatch Institute. Most of the well-known examples of participatory budgeting involve city administrations that have turned over decisions around municipal budgets, such…

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About Us

The Participatory Budgeting Project provides support and technical assistance to local governments and organizations that are interested in starting participatory budgeting processes in the U.S. and Canada. Josh Lerner and Gianpaolo Baiocchi founded the organization in 2006, first as an online resource center. The PBP has received institutional support from The Watson Institute in Providence…

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