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VITORIA-GASTEIZ: Citizens Open School

A space arising from the goal of educating citizens to be committed to their community.

In 2014 the City Council of Vitoria-Gasteiz underwent a participatory process in order to improve participatory culture though information, communication and education. To this end, in 2016 it set up the Citizens Open School, which offers training in the skills required in order to participate, where channels of participation are publicized and where the city council can come into closer contact with the city’s residents, in order for the latter to play a more and more leading role in municipal management and policy.

Some of the activities are addressed to training, others to experimentation, research, communication, evaluation and the drawing up of new ideas. All of these have been posed as meeting and relating spaces for sharing, collaborating and reaching agreements. All the activities are free of charge. Interpreting services are provided for people who use sign language, and, also, a day-care centre. Moreover, a steering committee has been set up to gather ideas, needs and suggestions in order to prepare the School’s program, its development and assessment. This group is made up of municipal personnel from various services, as well as associations and individual citizens.

From the beginning of the program in October 2016 until the beginning of 2018, 1,804 people have participated in-person activities while 769 have participated in talks and conferences through streaming. In the evaluations, the satisfaction score of the program is very high.

Check out the Bank of Experiences for more details on the project.

More information: http://www.vitoria-gasteiz.org/HEI
Contact: Mr. José Luís Pérez Gómez, Director of the Department of Citizens Participation and Community Centres
E-mail: kotelo@vitoria-gasteiz.org