G1000 Spring School 2024
'How to use deliberative democracy for better and more inclusive policy-making?'
20-22 March 2024, Eupen, Belgium
Join us for:
- a 2-days training that covers all aspects for setting up a well-designed deliberative process, given by specialists and project leaders in the field.
- a well-balanced mix of high standard knowledge and practical examples out of Denmark, United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Belgium, etc.
- a large variety of activities: learning sessions, practical workshops in small groups, Q&A sessions, networking moments.
Deliberative democracy as part of the solution
2024 seems a crucial year for democracy, with more than half of the world’s population being able to participate in elections. 2024 also poses great challenges to democracy, with increasing misinformation, declining voter turnouts, and citizens who are losing interest and trust in traditional politics.
Alongside these crucial democratic moments, new forms of democracy are growing. Thousands of citizens have received invitations to engage in citizens’ assemblies. Spaces are created for ordinary citizens to listen to experts, engage in constructive deliberation, and find common ground on policy plans. Every week, new deliberative processes are initiated in Europe and beyond, from the local to the supranational level.
Are you also looking for new ways to involve citizens in political decision-making? Do you consider that inclusion is a key factor for better policy-making? Are you considering setting up a deliberative process in your country, region, community or in your professional organisation? Then you’ve come to the right place.
Civil servants, politicians, academics, practitioners, or members of civil society organisations, working on a deliberative process with randomly selected citizens to improve inclusion in policy-making.
We offer a large variety of activities: learning sessions, practical workshops in small groups, Q&A sessions, networking moments.
We address the high-level standards of deliberative democracy through real-world cases that cover the whole spectrum of national, regional and local levels and deal with a variety of issues: climate, governance, social welfare, etc.
In the small group workshops, you have the opportunity to think further and ask questions related to your project.
We believe that collaboration and peer learning are fundamental to building strong projects.
Neuroscience shows that what is learned in a good spirit is better memorised and applied. We make sure that our Spring School is a rich, convivial, and fun experience.
Wednesday 20 March (7pm)
Welcome — First contact
Thursday 21 March (9am - 6pm)
Introduction — Deliberative democracy and citizens’ assemblies
Topic 1: Set-up & governance — What actors are involved in citizens’ assemblies, and what are their different roles? How to set up a guiding committee? How to set the mandate?
Topic 2: Recruitment — How do I organize a sortition? How do I pick the sortition criteria? How to include specific target groups? How can I make sure that people will show up – and keep showing up?
Topic 3: Deliberation – What do I need to organise a good deliberation? What are the pro’s and con’s of different facilitation styles? How do I end up with strong recommendations?
Friday 22 March (9am - 5pm)
Topic 4: Follow-up — How to draft the process to create the best possible environment for implementation? What is a good follow-up after the process, and how can it be ensured?
Topic 5: Evaluation – Why and how do I evaluate experiments with citizen deliberation? What criteria do I consider and how can I collect data? What lessons to expect from evaluations?
Workshops: inclusion / communication
📅 Wednesday March 20 (7pm) → Friday March 22 (5pm)
📍 In Eupen (East-Belgium)
The beating heart of the world's first permanent Citizens' dialogue. A getaway in the beautiful venue Heidberg Kloster. Easy to reach by train from Brussels Airport (90 min) or Paris, Germany, the Netherlands.
Address: Bahnhofstraße 4 - 4700 Eupen (Belgium) Phone: +32 (0)87 / 39 22 50
🗣️ Working language: English
🎟️ Fee: 790 € (excl. 21 % VAT)
This includes: 2-days training, hotel accommodation for 2 nights (20 & 21 March) at Kloster Heidberg, breakfast and lunch at the hotel (2 days), dinner in Eupen on the evening of 21 March.
We can offer an adapted price for a limited number of non-affiliated people who would like to participate. If you would like to apply for this, please contact Roman Cluytens
✍️ Registration possible until 6 March
Registration will stop 2 weeks before the event.
To guarantee good debates and ample learning opportunities, the number of places is limited.
Ieva Česnulaitytė is the Founding Head of Research and Learning at DemocracyNext. Ieva is part of the new research and action institute DemocracyNext. Previously she was a Policy Analyst at the OECD working on innovative citizen participation. She worked on the OECD’s reports now seen as reference in the field. She also worked in Lithuania’s Prime Minister’s office.
Zakia Elvang is Founding Partner and Democracy Advisor at WeDoDemocracy. Zakia is an expert advisor on deliberative democracy and a leading designer and facilitator of Citizens’ Assemblies and citizens’ councils that fulfil the OECD’s international principles.
Tom Lord is director of Sortition Services at Sortition Foundation. In his work, he focusses on the Sortition Foundation's provision of recruitment and selection to deliberative projects, as well as developing good practice and advocating for sortition to organisations.
Laura De Graaff
Laura works for the Dutch municipality of Vijfheerenlanden where she organized a full Citizen Assembly last year. She discovered that a good preparation with the city council was key to a successful process. This resulted in a full mandate and clear expectations towards the participants.
Jonathan is an advisor in democratic innovation for the president of the French-speaking Brussels Parliament. He co-designed the deliberative committees and currently works on implementing, promoting, and evaluating them. Additionally, Jonathan has accompanied the development of many major democratic innovations in several countries. He is also a member of the OECD’s expert network on citizen participation.
Thomas Schäfer is an alumnus of the previous Autumn school and now works as a freelance participation and deliberation specialist with a focus on citizen assemblies and digital democracy. With the goal to stimulate knowledge exchange in the Euregion, he has already facilitated several citizens’ assemblies and is evaluating Maastricht’s first CA. On the latter he will testify how he translates the OECD guidelines into practice.
"The Autumn School was a great opportunity to update my understanding about deliberative democracy as well as inclusive policy making. I was very happy to spend two full days with leading practitioners in this field. It was also a valuable networking opportunity to meet a lot of people who are working on deliberative democracy in various fields."
"Our delegation from the New South Wales Parliament found the experience informative, educational, balanced and in many ways inspiring. It allowed us to explore different frameworks and methods of deliberative democracy and importantly, solidify views about how we could apply them back home. The presenters and facilitators took us on a path from discussion and philosophical perspectives, to concrete and real examples we could implement. Presenters were frank about what worked and what didn’t. It wasn’t a preaching exercise, rather it was an informed and authentic discussion that will no doubt lead to the improvement of deliberative democratic projects around the world."
“I joined the G1000 School in Eupen in 2019 and 2021 and it were both an amazing experience! There I had the possibility to meet and know personally many people, politicians, public servants, academics and democracy practitioners from all over Europe and even the world. They shared with the others their experience and it was very precious for me and my organization to carry on our initiatives here in Italy. Being in Eupen is also a real added value, since we have the possibility of seeing with our own eyes the reality and people where for the first time in the world there were institutionalized two permanent bodies made up by representatives citizens drawn by lot."
"I feel motivated and inspired, but also well equipped with realistic expectations due to the nuanced presentations by the selected speakers."
"Suddenly I was part of a movement and it felt good!"
Picking different ideas from different stories, meeting new people, learning from others about what works and what doesn’t. There was a lot of expertise on diversity, on complexity.
"I want to participate again! So interesting, so useful!"
The Autumn School is so inspirational. When you think you’re the only one, you meet all these people who stimulate your thinking and learning. Really great stuff, very practical too. The warmth, the solidarity… it’s wonderful!