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How to influence the institutional strategies of urban councilors?
Decision-making is an individual or collective choice between several solutions to resolve a problematic situation. Bills are the subject of a classic process of placing a public problem on the political agenda (preliminary draft submitted, impact study, draft tabled in the National Assembly, commission “fundraising “, Debate with rapporteurs, government and parliamentarians, vote on amendment, parliamentary shuttle, possible appeals). However, the multiplication of spatial action scales, the proliferation of actors mobilized and the circulation of models and instruments of action leads to a complexified decision-making process in the form of negotiations between a multitude of actors.
The principles of decision making are related to:
- the nature of the decision (its scope) in relation to other political decisions and to stakeholders;
- the procedure for accessing the debate before (shared knowledge), during and after (treatment of irregularities, implementation) decision-making.
Several systems of political decision-making exist, from a dictatorial system to consensual, by vote, representative, linked to federalism, even random. However, within these processes there are influence activities that can damage confidence in the process of building a public decision (lack of transparency).
Thus, differences take place between the administrative levels and / or political ideologies leading to political strategies, and a manipulation of institutions (recruitment control, strategies for conquering positions, etc.), a procedural game (the game parliamentary compromises, for example). This also leads to conflicts of interest between members of government and citizens (activists or not) who are trying to modify the system of constraints in reference to local issues, as well as the objectives of decision-makers: transformation of capacities into power of affecting.
- How to involve citizens in political decision-making (degree of involvement from information to co-construction, temporality of involvement from upstream to evaluation, training in debate and information)?
- How to reinvent democratic forms with the appearance of digital technologies (place of debate, communication, political construction)? What representativeness, legitimacy, consensus building?
- How to make the influence and the functioning of lobbies transparent?
It would be a question of reinventing the role of intermediary bodies taking into account the digital transformation; support the development of civic-tech (initiatives using digital tools in the service of digital democracy) by giving citizens a way to influence the debate and articulate elected officials to citizens; allow the incorporation of conflicting dimensions in the political decision-making process (role of conflicts, trial / error, etc.).