GPSA Knowledge Platform

How to promote citizen participation among socially excluded groups

GPSA Knowledge Platform forums Forum How to promote citizen participation among socially excluded groups

This topic contains 9 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  Fitria 4 years ago.

  • Author
  • #3593


    In my view citizen engagement helps to achieve long-term development outcomes. However, it does not happen automatically. Drawing from my experience with community development work, some categories of people such as women, the poor and illiterate are unable to raise their voices to demand for accountability or participate in the decision making process.

    Therefore, I would like to know the strategies and mechanisms that can be used to support such sections of the population.

    Thank you!

  • #3675

    Mwila Agatha

    A critical contribution would be ensure some form of response from the government or other duty bearers. Being accustomed to being marginalised is further disempowering and the realisation that citizen action is a viable form of expression, that it does result in some benefit may change the way the socially excluded perceive participation.

  • #3678


    A citizen engagement approach should include specific actions to hear the voice, know the livelihood priorities of these groups, and reflect them in their decision making. Intermediaries such as extension workers for farmers, schools and teachers could play a role in hearing the voices.
    On the other hand, I would suggest that “guidelines” for the decision making processes, should explain effective ways (recommended practices) for giving attention to these groups, as well as tips for avoiding “the traps of local elite capture”.
    With specific focus on skills of the participants in the accountability arena, participants could be introduced into a Civic Participation skills framework, such as the one I propose at

  • #4573


    A Citizen participation aproach will include several factors. One I think is essential is building confidnce in citizens. It is important to demonstrate to citizens that they can Voice out, It is important to do it because they have the rigth to do so. Engagements from public authorities give them the rigths to demand account. One can be in confidence because he/she feels that he is not begging but it is is legal and legitimate for hims to ask for.
    I can share an experience I came accross from one of my friends from Burundi who has build confidence on marginalized people with an autonomous situation through a Saving Internal Lending System). The document is in French. Sorry for that.

  • #5175

    Pier Paolo

    I thik that it depends by the institutional and cultural context and by the kind of marginalization. Different approach or tools could be available.
    I think the problem is, not only for the marginalized people, the long term result when the people have imminent trouble.

  • #5179


    Hello all, I am joining you as a student of the ongoing World Bank course titled Citizen Engagement. There is much discussion of these issues, and the experts all reinforce your comments that context is hugely important, as there is not a one-size fits all. Part of the context is the “social contract” that guides expectations that civil society has of government, and vice versa. I would also agree with Jean that trust and confidence are essential, so the interlocutor between government or service provider and the marginalized groups must be someone whom both sides are able to work with and count on. Perhaps this is a traditional leader, or an NGO, or representative from a local association.

    A few other thoughts- it helps to know what the baseline of service delivery is for the different types of households/ groups and the impact of the problem and proposed solution, from the beneficiaries’ point of view. One tool that I have employed is a “KAP” analysis- what the communities know (Knowledge), what they feel/ perceive (Attitudes) and what their current behavior is (Practices) regarding the issue at hand.

    I welcome your thoughts and further discussion!

    Elicia B.

  • #5187

    Md. Ashraful

    Hello Everyone,
    I am Ashraful Alam from Bangladesh joining you as a student of the ongoing World Bank course titled Citizen Engagement- A game changer for development?. Citizen Engagement in policy and regulation or in other words designing human centric development policy or programs is much talked about development discussions around the world. Even though there is much discussion on the issue, but it seems the issue is context specific and there are other factors such as governance structure, education level and income level of the expected participants that determines the level of engagement.

    I have seen from my experience in working with citizen groups that poor, illiterate and disadvantaged groups are weak in raising their voices against discrimination while the teeth i.e. the government often times do not pay attention to such voices. I would like to know how the engagement exercise can be made more effective in such cases. Your comments and suggestions are most welcome.

    I welcome your thoughts and further discussion!

  • #5193


    The key to promoting citizen participation among socially exluded groups is to first address and work to remove the inequalities and social barriers that marginalise and exclude large segments of the population from the governance process. Education, economic empowerment, access to resources and land, socio-economic and policital justice must form key components of efforts to promote citizen participation. It is also important that sustained civic education that not only highlights the rights of all citizens to participate in governance decision making process but that also dymystefies the process and institutions of government. We must also work to make the institutions of government more accessible.`

  • #5209


    I´m just learning about the topic of citizen participation but i have seen that people of socially excluded groups don´t raise their voices even in the companies they work for. I´m talking about private companies which are commited with social responability. I think that people need to feel that they could make a difference no matter what is their educational level. Maybe some programs in side the companies that motivate that all employees participate with ideas to improve the conditions in the companies´area could motivate the same type of participation of the employees in their own communities.

  • #5241


    In engaging socially excluded groups should be carefully executed. The fact that they already excluded it is already hard (for them as well as others). During the engagement process, the groups should be feel secured to raise their voices. It is also makes sure that every participants that join given enough time/fair share to express their voice. Setting the attitude of the engagement on the ‘non-judgmental’ and ‘positive learning about each other’ attitude for all participants as well as committee could assist for better listening and responding during the process.

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.

0 Responses on How to promote citizen participation among socially excluded groups"

How Can I Contribute to the Knowledge Platform

You may contribute to the Knowledge Platform in many different ways: you can send and disseminate your social accountability materials (toolkits, reports, videos, etc.) in the knowledge repository; you can contact, interact and collaborate with other peers and join a global community of social accountability practitioners; you can participate in the different learning and knowledge exchange activities of the GPSA KP such as online courses, thematic forums, webinars and blogs; and you can develop a partnership with the GPSA KP to implement collaborative knowledge activities.

2016 GPSA Knowledge Portal. All rights reserved | Terms and Conditions
To participate in all the learning and sharing activities, you need to be registered Click here to create your account