Sitra Asks Citizens for New Ideas to Enhance Democracy
Image: Sitra's Synergise Finland Forum participants in London/ Sitra, 2012
Sitra's (the Finnish Innovation Fund) Synergise Finland Forum discussed social innovations and participatory democracy in the UK at the Finnish Institute in London on 17 January 2012.
The Forum's participants attended two lectures by Philip Colligan from NESTA (the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts) and Anna Coote from the New Economics Foundation. Colligan's lecture was titled "British Governance and Society: How to Innovate?" and Coote talked under the topic "After the Post-War Welfare State: Participation and Equality in an Age of Austerity". Whilst in London, Sitra's Finnish delegation also visited various British organisations to hear about new forms of democracy.
Since spring 2011, the Synergise Finland Forum has gathered together Finns interested in social participation, joint decision-making and social wellbeing. The group consists of politicians, journalists, civil activists and civil servants. The theme of the first Synergise Finland Forum was New Work and the second is focused on New Democracy. The purpose of the Forum is to identify new innovative ways to enhance Finnish democracy.
Sitra is now looking for interesting projects and citizens' new ideas related to democracy and social participation as a basis for Sitra's second Synergise Finland Forum, which takes place in March 2012. The Forum aims to test various ideas and concepts about democracy. Sitra is prepared to assist in launching and promoting some of the best proposals. The new ideas should be submitted online by 31 January 2012.