The City of Helsinki personnel have a new tool to assist them with the planning of services: Participation Game. The game helps city employees to engage citizens better than before in the development of services and thus to promote participation.
The city’s goal is to increase the opportunities of citizens to hear about matters concerning themselves and to influence those matters. Participation Game helps them to recognize what things are done well and what could be improved.
The results are co-created plans for action to increase participation and the influence of citizens in matters concerning them.
“Gaming and development plans are by no means enough in themselves,” says Titta Reunanen of the City Executive Office, who oversees cooperation with residents. “The key is to turn plans into action.”
Impacts are evaluated with a specific monitoring tool. It is used to document the participation plans created during the game, to produce measurable data on the outcomes of participation and to gather information about the use of the game and needs to develop it further.
The development of Participation Game has involved one hundred employees representing all city departments. The development process has been managed by the service design agency Hellon.