What should the future North Jutland look like? 200 representatively selected citizens were asked this question when the North Denmark Region in cooperation with The Danish Board of Technology held a citizens’ summit on the future development plan for the region, RUP 2012.
The citizens’ summit was planned, conducted and documented by The Danish Board of Technology Foundation in collaboration with North of Denmark Region.
In 2011, the North Denmark Region faced having to review their regional development plan written in 2008, but what were the most essential challenges to be faced in 2012 and the years to come? Are there any specific areas that the region should focus especially on? Which initiatives could contribute to steering the development in the desired direction? What was the desired direction? How do we create a great environment for private citizens and industry alike? These were the questions which the Regional Council wished to put before the citizens.
These are the reasons why the North Denmark Region invited 200 citizens to participate in a citizens’ summit on September 10th, 2011, a little north of Aalborg. At this summit, the citizens worked on pinpointing challenges, discussing and deciding on a number of predetermined themes and questions. During the event, 30 politicians from the region and its municipalities were present and partook as chairmen, listening to the citizens while they debated and presented their arguments. At the end of the day, the citizens were given the opportunity to direct any questions they may have to a panel of politicians who in turn were given the chance to reflect on the many inputs they had received during the day.
Along with the politicians’ experiences during the day, the results from this summit were applied to the continued effort on developing a new regional plan.
The Danish Board of Technology Foundation assisted The North Denmark Region in planning, conducting and documenting the citizens’ summit. Through a number of years, The Danish Board of Technology Foundation has planned and conducted a number regional and national citizens’ summits. The overall purpose was to give the citizens a chance to speak up and influence the political process while simultaneously offering the politicians the invaluable opportunity to consult a large group of citizens on one or more subjects of current interest.