PB Stories

Signing off and 5 next steps

Hi friends, This definitely isn’t how I’d planned it. When I announced last year that I’d step down as Co-Executive Director of the Participatory Budgeting Project by April 2020, I wasn’t expecting to align this transition with the biggest global pandemic in a century. But here we are and March 31 will be my last day at PBP,…

Read More

Participatory Budgeting: An Idea You Should Steal

On December 10th, PBP’s Co-Executive Director, Shari Davis was invited to join a number of problem solvers from across the country to speak at the The Philadelphia Citizen’s 2nd annual Ideas We Should Steal Festival. This festival is an annual full-day convening that brings together the most innovative urban thinkers and global thought leaders together…

Read More

Celebrating this year’s biggest wins: revitalizing democracy in 2020

Happy Holidays from all of us at PBP! After a busy 2019 launching exciting new projects like Democracy Beyond Elections and PBCan, and working with incredible communities like students in Merced and educators in NYC, we took some time in November, during our staff retreat, to look at the big picture. We want to extend a big thank you…

Read More

Leadership Change at PBP

Dear PBP supporters, I’m writing to share big news for me and PBP. In April 2020, I’ll step down as Co-Executive Director at PBP and transition out of the organization. My fellow Co-ED Shari Davis will remain as Executive Director.  Fifteen years ago, I flew to Brazil to convene a discussion on participatory budgeting (PB)…

Read More

Shari Davis Interview on Building a New America with Jonathan Arias

Crowd of people with some raising their hands. Caption: How Participatory Budgeting is Improving Democracy, Shari Davis

Participatory Budgeting Project (PBP) Co-Executive Director Shari Davis, recently joined Jonathan Arias on an episode of the Building A New America podcast, a show that reconsiders how laws that were created centuries ago, shape our lives today. In the episode titled, “How Participatory Budgeting is Improving Democracy with Obama Fellow Shari Davis,” Shari and Jonathan…

Read More

Giving Tuesday is coming up. Here are 3 community leaders we are grateful for

What comes to mind when you think of who leads our democracy? Too often, we don’t imagine people in positions of power who actually reflect the diverse communities they serve. This especially holds true for historically marginalized communities, including people of color, immigrants, low-income people, youth, people with disabilities, and formerly incarcerated individuals. In preparation…

Read More

A PB Love Story: How Catherine and Neil Met

On Valentine’s Day, we bring you a story of love and democracy. Catherine Zinnel used to be the coordinator for participatory budgeting (PB) in New York City Council Member Brad Lander’s office. She met her now-husband Neil Reilly when he got involved as a PB volunteer. PB brings people together. For Catherine and Neil, PB…

Read More

Building Community and Student Power in Public Universities

Urban public universities are difficult places to find community. In what are largely “commuter schools”, students have less opportunities to connect on a daily basis. Many students balance coursework, family commitments, and multiple jobs. It’s easy for campus life to fall by the wayside.  In the face of this, Participatory Budgeting (PB) is a vital…

Read More

Participatory Budgeting for Businesses: It Justworks

Last April, Isaac Oates was leaving his local library when a stranger asked him to vote. At first he politely declined, but when the volunteer said it was about the budget and would just take a minute, Isaac took a ballot, and learned about participatory budgeting (PB). Six months later, Oates was leading a PB…

Read More