Faced with low levels of citizen interest in community affairs, the Municipality of Reggio Emilio decided to experiment with participatory budgeting in District 8. Exactly 256 citizens took part in the process, which took place between September 2007 and February 2008. 17 of the 123 proposals made in meetings with citizens were included in the 2008 budget. These were related to the community's quality of life. Participants felt satisfied with the process, and there is hope that future initiatives will be even more successful.
As the first ward-based participatory budgeting experiment in the United States, the Participatory Budgeting Initiative in Chicago's 49th Ward began in November of 2009 with the goal of directly allocating a portion of the Alderman’s capital budget for the 49th Ward by residents. Citizens gathered to discuss, deliberate, and vote into implementation projects totaling $1.3 million dollars. Forming six themed committees of 16-20 residents each, the participants created 36 proposals to better the Ward’s infrastructure.
In January 2008, the Municipality of Livorno decided to experiment an innovative type of decision making process concerning the renewal and the future use of the 'Cisternino', an ancient building historically used for water supply. The process was proposed by a citizen association, the “Laboratory for the future of Livorno”. The process had the ambitious goal to reflect on the present situation of the historical building and imagine a desirable future on the basis of the past.
Since 2002, the city of Grenoble, France, has engaged citizens in public decision-making through participatory committees and town meetings. Residents have been able to express their opinions and make recommendations on city planning, education, cultural life, and other municipal issues. Over the years, this program has strengthened local democracy and empowered public participation in important civic projects.