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Tech4Participation research initiative

ANSA-EAP

“Despite the availability of the online modes for participation, most barangay residents participated using offline modes.” — ANSA-EAP

2,340

people reached offline

137

people reached via SMS

Start date
May 2016
End date
June 2017
Period: 14 months

Issue

Two recent initiatives to facilitate local participation and citizen engagement in villages (barangays) in the Philippines have used both online and office approaches.

Offline modes have proven more popular with users, but are more demanding to implement; online modes can operate at larger scales, but depend on factors such as an existing ICT infrastructure and technology literacy, and have been relatively little used.

What factors have shaped these patterns, and does this tell us about designing appropriate technologies for citizen participation?

Project

In 2014 and 2015, ANSA-EAP piloted two projects that combine offline and online modes of citizen participation: ‘I-budget.mo’, a participatory budgeting initiative, and ‘Check My Barangay’, which integrates participatory budgeting and citizen project monitoring and evaluation.

The use of different online and ICT-based options was expected to increase participation and inclusivity, but overall barangay residents preferred the offline modes.

In light of this context, this research asks

  • what are the underlying factors and conditions that account for the under-utilization of tech-based modes of participation and citizen voice?
  • how far does the availability, accessibility and use of ICTs affect, change, or shape, local participation and citizen voice, and what factors determine whether or not a technology is appropriate?
  • what online and offline strategies and pathways should be used to make participation inclusionary?
  •  what are the key issues that enable and/or mitigate government’s responsiveness towards tech-based citizen participation initatives?

 

Partner

The Affiliated Network for Social Accountability-East Asia and the Pacific (ANSA-EAP) is a networking and learning facility for social accountability practitioners in East Asia and the Pacific, reaching out to citizen groups, government institutions, the media and international development partners.

ANSA–EAP promotes constructive engagement with, and citizens’ monitoring of, the performance of government, specifically the quality of public service delivery and the transparency of public transactions.