Problems and Purpose
In the Po district, floods are the most frequent natural events among those with disastrous consequences for people, territories and goods. According to now widely shared assessments, the areas subject to flooding are destined to grow, as well as the number of people potentially exposed also due to changes in land use, conurbation and climate change. Flood risk management is therefore a complex and critical component that interferes with public safety and quality of life. Communication and public participation in the construction of flood risk management plans plays a strategic role in sharing and legitimizing the plan itself (cit., Po River Basin Authority, 2011, p.4).
The European Directive 2007/60 / EC, transposed into Italian law with Legislative Decree 49/2010, initiated a new phase of the national policy for the management of flood risk, which the Flood Risk Management Plan ( PGRA) must implement, in the most effective way. The PGRA, introduced by the Directive for each river basin district, directs the action on the most significant risk areas, organized and hierarchized with respect to all the risk areas and defines the safety objectives and intervention priorities at the district scale, in a concerted way between all administrations and managing bodies, with the participation of stakeholders and the involvement of the general public (cit. link 1).
Background History and Context
The late 1980s mark a series of legislative advances required after much effort and physical confrontation in the field of social conflict over the environment. Important environmental policy reforms are taking place in Italy. They come after the striking environmental disasters of the 1950s (Polesine flood 1951), 1960s (Vayont dam 1963), 1970s (Seveso dioxin 1976) and 1980s (river pollution in the Bormida Valley and the flood disaster in Valtellina). The aforementioned disasters had a European media coverage but to draw conclusions came the nuclear disaster of Chernobyl (1986) or rather Pripyat, in Ukraine, also perceived in Italy, not only from the media point of view. Environmental problems and disasters did not end then, indeed, some interpreted that phase as a new era of sociological transformation (the society of risk) in which the environment played a key role on various levels and above all on that of the comparison between science and technology. and democracy, territoriality (Beck, 1986). Towards the end of the eighties the environmental movements become quite strong, the Green parties were born, the environmental culture was a little more popular, it had begun to break through the media sphere and were introduced: the Ministry of the environment, new authorities and agencies for environmental control, law enforcement and crimes and penalties were introduced. Finally, all environmental planning was renewed and it became a largely regional responsibility. For example, with Law 183/1989 “Rules for the organizational and functional reorganization of soil protection”, the Basin Authorities for the river basins of national importance are established (Article 12).
Basin authorities are mixed bodies, made up of state and regions that operate on the river basins considered as unitary systems. This technical body of environmental territorial planning is directed by experts in hydrogeological matters appointed by the Institutional Committee of the Basin Authority, its decision-making body; it is chaired by the Ministry of the Environment and made up of 4 other ministries and the presidents of the regions that share the territory of the basin.
The Authority of the Po river basin, the one we are dealing with in the case study, extends over a very large territory (74,000 sq km of which 71,000 in Italian territory), a quarter of the entire national territory ( see map link 3), 3,200 municipalities, seven regions and a population of approximately 16 million inhabitants. In this area 40 per cent of the gross domestic product is formed; 37 percent of the domestic industry, which supports 46 percent of jobs; 55 per cent of animal husbandry in just 5 provinces; 35 percent of agricultural production. Electricity consumption is equal to 48 per cent of national consumption (link 2). And it is the territory where most of the worst Italian environmental disasters took place, both in quantity and intensity. It is the area where the Italian economy has concentrated and the levels of land and resource consumption, conurbation, emission, withdrawal, extraction, disposal are maximum.
The basin plans drawn up by the Authority are 5, which concern different aspects in water management. The main instrument of the Authority's planning and programming action is constituted by the hydrographic basin plan, through which the actions and rules of use aimed at the conservation, defense and enhancement of the soil and the correct use of water, based on the physical and environmental characteristics of the territory concerned "(Law 183/89 art.17, paragraph 1). There are also more orienting plans: hydrogeological structure, water quality, water balance and flood risk management. Of the latter, introduced with the European Directive 2007/60 / EC, transposed into Italian law with Legislative Decree 49/2010, we will deal with illustrating the participatory process that was coordinated by the Authority for its elaboration, up to the its approval by the Institutional Committee of the Authority, which took place on March 3, 2016.
Organizing, Supporting, and Funding Entities
The Po River Basin Authority, based in Parma, is the owner of the planning and the promoter of the process. The coordination, information and comparison work on a district scale was concentrated at its headquarters, concerning general issues concerning the entire basin / district.
Five regions are therefore involved in the process: Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy, Piedmont, Liguria and Veneto which have activated - for the purposes of the plan in question - their own offices responsible for land planning and soil protection.
The reclamation and irrigation consortia that have competence in smaller hydrographic areas called districts are also involved in the Hydraulic Risk Plan. They are public law entities administered by the owners of the buildings in the area through their representatives who form the Board of Directors of the Consortium. The consortia have their own technical office, they can carry out improvement works for agricultural purposes (canals, locks, drainage pumps) and therefore they can collect taxes from their own consortium members.
Finally, there are the Civil Protection departments of the provinces falling within the Po river basin district that deal with the prevention and management of emergencies and public rescue. They are the bodies that coordinate rescue and recovery interventions following catastrophic events.
The planning process started in compliance with the provisions of the Floods Directive 2007/60 / EC is subject to the provisions of European legislation. Since this process is attributable to an activity of integration and updating of the current basin planning, attributable to the hydrogeological planning plan and to the extraordinary plans for risk reduction, it is subject to the provisions of Legislative Decree No. 152 of 3 / 4/2006, in which, according to art. 66, paragraph 7 of Legislative Decree No. 152 of 3/4/2006, the basin authorities promote the active participation of all interested parties in the elaboration, review and updating of basin plans, ensuring that, for each river basin district, the following documents are published and made available for any comments from the public, including users, allowing a minimum period of six months for the submission of written comments:
- The timetable and work program for the submission of the plan, including a statement of the advisory measures that must be taken at least three years before the start of the period to which the plan relates;
- An interim global assessment of the main water management problems, identified in the river basin at least two years before the start of the period covered by the plan;
- Copies of the basin plan project, at least one year before the start of the period to which the plan relates.
The only financiers are the public authorities involved with their own budget, but the published documentation is completely missing and information on the costs attributable to the participatory process is difficult to trace. Professional facilitators from the Futour SaS of Pisa were hired only in Emilia-Romagna, probably through direct assignment by the Communication Service. The ER has implemented a process on a regional scale, with a large Control Room, made up of 25 regional officials (Soil Defense Service, land reclamation consortia, river basin authorities of Romagna, Reno, Volano and Costa, Civil Protection) , which organized a complex process on a regional scale also including the adjacent hydrographic basins and the Adriatic coast, which was also affected - precisely in that period - by flood phenomena (RER, 2014).
Participant Recruitment and Selection
Participation was divided into 2 levels:
- District scale level based in Parma, headquarters of the Po Basin Authority . District level communication and interactions were more oriented towards institutional governance and therefore the involvement of the various political and technical authorities (including research and academic institutes) operating in the district. Furthermore, the knowledge frameworks, maps and information bases were shared with universities and other research bodies. The subjects most involved in this phase were the institutional delegates representing the authorities involved in the governance of such a geographically large and complex basin plan. Therefore, after a mapping of the actors to be involved, contacts were made, starting with the experts from the academic world of research bodies and companies, as well as with the technicians of the local and functional bodies, to whom they joined in the subsequent phases, the representatives associations and representatives of citizens' committees (eg the flood victims of the Modena area in 2010).
- Regional scale level , located in the regional capitals and in localities chosen for their relevance to the sub-basins or areas of the consortia. Participation on a regional scale was coordinated by the directorates of the regional soil defense services , in one case, making use of the Communication Service in Emilia-Romagna. Apart from the regional technical round tables, addressed to specific technical and institutional offices, access to the meetings has always been characterized by workshops or seminars by targeted invitation or open to all interested parties as well as by online channels open to the public. In Emilia-Romagna, a supervisory committee of the participatory process called the Control Room was created, composed of technicians from the regional Soil Defense, Communication, Environment services, civil protection managers, the Basin Authorities, the Reclamation Consortia and Harp (Regional Environmental Protection Agency). The composition of the Control Room took place by invitation aimed at executives who in certain cases have delegated other members of their office. In a total number of 25 people it was representative of the decision-making ownership of the policy and its territoriality (RER, 2014, p. 2).
Methods and Tools Used
Agora Ekklesia it is a method that recalls the classical ways of ancient Greece. People in a room are invited to make a brief speech. In the Agora the main rule is that anyone can speak, going to a certain point in the room, while all the others can only listen (RER 2014, p. 20). You can express quick positions on the topic or feelings, points of view, cite cases. The organizer, or an elected member of the group, collects and synthesizes the theses and arranges them according to a dichotomous logic (usually) in a panel. Finally, the sentences can be aggregated, selections and votes priority or majority thesis. The Agora was used in the Emilia-Romagna process in the start-up phase with the Control Room (2.1).
Knowledge Safari . The participants are divided into heterogeneous groups: each stage has a theme to explore, the participants are distributed among the stages; each group reflects on the theme of their stage; participants present the proposals to their group and write them on the poster relating to their stage to be read by the next group; every 10 minutes the groups move clockwise to the next stage; they read the question and the answers left by those who came first and add other ideas and proposals. In the plenary, when the groups have explored all the stages, a spokesperson is identified who summarizes everything that was written in the stage in which they are. Finally, the contributions are collected in a report by a team made up of a mix of participants from the various groups (RER, 2014, p. 49). The Safari method was applied for the definition of Significant Risk Areas in the start-up phase with the Control Room (2.1).
Digital mosaic - MODÌ is an electronic brainsto rming system, combined with facilitation techniques. The MODÍ is used together with other methodologies making the systematic management of creativity and innovation a key factor for the success of the path. The MODÍ includes interactive discussion in groups on questions posed by the facilitator, writing and viewing the ideas and proposals of the groups through keyboards, the group re-reading of all ideas and the search for points of convergence, synergies, synthesis and new proposals. All the information is then collected in a final report that contains the answers, ideas and concepts that emerged from the questions discussed among the workshop participants. MOD Ì provides a shared conceptual space where all participants can simultaneously see and contribute their ideas and participate in the construction of knowledge through both dialogue and dialectics. During the creative sessions, with the use of keyboards able to collect the ideas of the participants, a mosaic of concepts, phrases, projects is created and projected, shared with respect to the solution of problems, suggestions, strategies, policies, for the development of new services, functions and products "(Franceschini, 2016, p. 23). The MODÌ was used throughout the Emilia-Romagna itinerary (2.1 and 2.2).
World Café - WOCA is an interactive conversation method that has been adopted by large corporations, governments and communities around the world to animate collaborative dialogue networks. WOCAs are built on the principle that people already have the wisdom and creativity needed to tackle the toughest challenges and can learn a lot from spontaneous conversations with people outside their organization or groups they are used to. Therefore, in the discussion mode, tables of 4-5-6 people are formed. After the first discussion on a question posed by the event organizer, a witness (or table-host) of the table remains stationary while the others go to different tables. The witness records the ideas expressed and communicates them to new guests or the plenary facilitator before the next discussion begins. And so on until all the questions are exhausted. The WOCA was used in the local workshops (2.1 and 2.2 Emilia-Romagna).
Lego Serious Play . "The LEGO Group, looking for a tool to unlock innovation within the company, realized that the solution was in the LEGOs themselves. Just as the LEGO Group had enabled children to 'build their dreams' for decades, can also give adults the chance to build their visions for a future strategy. Through Elements of LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® bricks they can be used as a leverage effect for the rapid prototyping of future ideas and actions through metaphors and forms of storytelling. (RER , 2015, p. 11) Lego bricks and its cards were mainly used in the Ferrara workshop (2.2. Emilia-Romagna).
Idea Boxes® is a method developed jointly by FUTOUR and Future Center Alliance and provides various possible application methods to visualize ideas and proposals. Each participant elaborates ideas, projects and solutions on a card (title, objectives, actions), shares them and with the group decides how to tell them in plenary through their own Idea Box. It is a white box in which all the facades can be used to describe and present with images, words and colors the main elements of the project of each work group (ideas, projects, solutions). They can be placed in columns of affinity to show how individual and collective creativity produces concrete and shared solutions (Ib., P. 16). Talking boxes have been used on various occasions in workshops in Emilia-Romagna (2.1, 2.2).
What Went On: Process, Interaction, and Participation
1.1 - District level - Phase 1
The first phase of the process, coordinated by the working group of the Basin Authority (AdBPo), involved: sharing the path, its integration with administrative procedures, the draft of a calendar with the various deadlines for the processing of documents to be produced, until the conclusion with the adoption and final approval of the plan.
In this first phase, the AdBPo working group also addressed the issue of the overall investment of resources to be assigned to the participation and communication procedures, opting for an intermediate level of intensity (managed directly by the internal offices, without of assignments to professionals or external consultants, planning to organize a long process (4 years) fully willing to incorporate the observations and needs coming from stakeholders and citizens, but in any case consultative, therefore strongly filtered by the technical administrations to which it is entrusted risk management (AdBPo, 2011, p. 11-13).
Also in this phase, which is purely informative and informative, the district-wide information forums were launched. Four were organized: the first in November 2011, the second in November 2012, the third in January 2013 and the fourth in November 2014. These were public meetings, in large conference rooms at the offices of the Authority or the Chamber of Commercio di Parma, with the first part of 2 hours dedicated to the interventions of experts (technicians of the authorities, academics or representatives of research bodies or companies) followed by an hour and a half dedicated to the debate with questions or interventions from the public. The third meeting discussed risk under its sociological profile and therefore the dominant attitudes towards the environment and their conditioning on collective measures to deal with risks, the importance of participation for the definition and dissemination of an awareness of risk. that empowers and guides towards an increasingly democratic risk management. Of the results of these meetings, only the slides of the various interventions are accessible but there are no minutes, therefore any critical interventions from the public are not reported, probably not even recorded (link 1).
2.1 - Regional level - Phase 1
In the meantime, always starting in 2011, the meetings and instruments on a regional scale have started. Each region has organized itself independently. All of them have operationally occupied their own technical offices, with the exception of Emilia-Romagna which has entrusted the coordination of the participatory path to its communication service which in turn has hired a company of professional facilitators (Futour SaS of Pisa) who have used specific dialogue (Franceschini, 2016, p. 30-33).
In the regions, the first phase was characterized by meetings of comparison between technicians from the water authorities, civil protection and the environment. Opening conferences were organized in all the regional offices, followed by workshops and seminars, in each province, for which public notice and invitations were given to bodies, associations and professional orders, to all the organized actors. These were meetings aimed at sharing the cognitive framework, (in particular the draft risk maps) and receiving analyzes, comments and any criticisms. The most used methods are those of the public meeting (Public hearing). Up to the first half of 2014, at the end of the first phase, 140 meetings were calculated, concentrated in 2013 (55), and for at least 50% of a technical nature (AdbPo, 2014, p. 7-8).
2.1 - Emilia-Romagna - Phase 1
After an initial technical workshop to launch the Control Room, conducted by Futour SaS with participatory methodologies (Agorà Ekklesia, Mosaico Digitale and Safari), an institutional meeting was held (reserved for representatives of local authorities), 8 provincial technical meetings ( reserved for the technical offices of local authorities), 2 workshops with citizens and stakeholders (facilitated by Futour SaS) using the digital Mosaic tool.
In the first workshop with the Control Room, the Agorà method was used to break the ghiccio and prepare the discussion with the next method ( MODÌ ) and bring out to what extent the availability of the regional technicians would be pushed to grant power to consult with citizens, what were their strengths and weaknesses and their fears. The interventions of the Agora were stimulated by a provocative statement that stated that "organizing a participation path as required by the EU Directive [...] was just a fulfillment that will add nothing to our participation because we technicians know very well what needs to be done , therefore it is a useless waste of time "(RER, 2014, cit., p. 20). Then the participants intervened with coherent statements, for example: "I am convinced of the importance of participation. However, I think it takes time and resources that we do not have at the moment. We need to define what is at stake, on what can change our opinion" , or or in contrast to the initial thesis, for example: "Do technicians really know everything? Science is not an absolute or deterministic knowledge" (Ib.).
With MODÌ , the debate on the issues introduced by the Agora was opened, trying to find solutions, maximize the benefits and minimize the risks of the dialogue process with citizens, understand what the contributions of citizens and actors to the Plan could be , what could be the pre-existing conflicts between actors / citizens and institutions? And on this issues and points of view emerged - enucleated by the Modì method - affecting different areas, which was followed by a long discussion. For example, according to the technicians of the control room, on the question of the relationship between institutions and citizens / stakeholders (RER, 2014, p. 22):
conflicts arise from land use restrictions and regulations that affect the value of assets; risk and danger impose constraints on the territory (urban planning ...), economic repercussions and burdens; citizens and committees of flood victims are collaborative while those who have no historical memory are not very willing to collaborate; in the coastal areas, recently affected citizens feel that they are in good hands but do not want to spend on protection works by asking for interventions to fall on global taxation; the stakeholders are not aware that they have built in areas at risk and want to be defended at all costs, the faults are also at the political level which is responsible (Ib., p. 23).
To aggregate the positions, a questionnaire was then administered, always based on the same pre-set questions and answers on an intensity scale from 1 to 5. Obtaining an average result for each of them. For example, on the question of whether or not the hazard and risk maps offered margins for consultation / participation or only information was answered with an average of 2.9. How much it is possible to take into account the contribution of citizens in the modification of maps was answered with an average of 3.12. The results of the instant questionnaire are followed by a discussion on who to involve and take into consideration the areas with the greatest probability, therefore the plains and the coast, the most populated and built areas. Finally, the group went on to think about the next steps, about the good rules of discussion and, on the basis of these rules, about the evaluation of the day (Ib., P. 43 - 44).
Safari was used in the Control Room to define and share the critical issues of the Significant Risk Areas (ARS) of the regional territory: ARS under the district competence, ARS under the regional competence and ARS under the local authority. ARS have been identified for each area (eg at the district level we have the Po river shaft from Turin to the sea, the Secchia, the coast; at the local level we have the hydraulic node of Cento, the port of Goro, etc ... ) and the reasons why they are considered ARS considering the complex territorial relationships, for example in the hydraulic node of Cento there are recurring problems due to insufficiency of the reclamation network; unfavorable morphology; high presence of potentially exposed elements (RER, 2014, p.50).
The first workshop with local actors and the population was held in Cervia (dedicated to coastal flooding) and a second in Bologna (to river floods). These two events were attended by about 60 people (including stakeholders and citizens) and the 25 regional technicians who were members of the Control Room (Franceschini, 2016, pp. 14 - 27).
In the workshops with citizens and stakeholders "The work of the tables was interactive, facilitated by the use of the MOD Ì , and divided into four stages that simulate the approach of an event. Based on brief introductory explanations (accompanied by video , images and short stories), the participant was stimulated with four key questions, corresponding to four scenarios: I live in an area potentially at risk, what can I do? And the community? One day before the event, what can I do What can I do? What can the community do? During the event, what can I do? What can the community do? What I learned today What I can do from tomorrow. In the first three scenarios, citizens were given the opportunity to guide their responses in individual actions and collective actions, while in the fourth and last scenario the question asked concerned the theme of the analysis of the day (what have I learned today?) and of the prospects for the future (what can I do next?) "(Ib., p. 28). Several responses emerged from the discussions that were adequately reported in instant reports and summary reports. Among the answers to the first question, what is expected before an event, the following themes emerged: "the importance of information (especially in schools), knowledge, awareness and training; the speed of dissemination information, also with innovative, unusual and multi-channel methods; the protection of loved ones and personal goods through the implementation of individual actions organized in advance, but also solidarity with neighbors and the weakest subjects; the willingness to put at the service of institutions, according to suitable and codified rules of conduct; the need to have up-to-date and easy-to-understand civil protection plans "(RER, 2014-dec, p. 12). Or on what can be done during the flood event, the following themes emerged: "The main need is to be able to implement previously learned behaviors during the event, both related to self-protection and related to the situation local emergency plan (municipal emergency plan). However, there remains the need to be assisted by someone "authoritative" who says the further actions to be taken to continue managing the emergency beyond what the individual can do. behaviors can be implemented by the single person, while others must be activated by those who manage the emergency process in its complexity "(Ib., p. 14). 2.1 - Other regions - Phase 1
In Lombardy, in addition to a substantial number of meetings reserved for the technical offices responsible for the hydrographic structure of all territorial and functional bodies, 7 thematic public meetings were organized for sub-river basins, in conference mode with scheduled technical interventions and a space for discussion. The invitations were addressed "with specific communication to all stakeholders falling within the [sub] river basin". Before the meetings, the guests were asked to fill in a questionnaire on cards with open and closed questions. They took place in Milan (2), in Sondrio, Pavia, Lodi, Bergamo and Brescia, with a total of 915 appearances (Occhi, R., 2015).
In Piedmont, 4 seminars were held to present the "hazard and seismic risk maps" in 4 provincial capitals (link 4). No further information is provided.
Liguria does not seem to have activated a specific public consultation process, leaving the observations to be received in writing at the appropriate times and methods defined by the environmental assessment procedures (link 5).
In Veneto, 3 meetings "with institutional stakeholders" were organized, one in Venice, 1 in Verona and 1 in Rovigo, of which only the programs and slides of the interventions are available. No other data is provided with respect to the technical meetings (link 6).
Once the provisional project was defined, the involvement with the district forums, seminars and regional workshops was resumed to discuss the management plan being defined. 1.2 - District level - Phase 2
At the district level, from 30 April to 28 May 2015 the Authority organized 5 consultation forums on the management plan. By replicating the forum model of the first phase, we focused on the strategic issues elaborated by the planning, in view of its conclusion: 1) improving the knowledge of risk, 2) improving the performance of existing defensive structures; 3) reduce risk exposure; 4) ensure greater space for rivers; 5) defense of cities and metropolitan areas. The first 4 were held in Parma while the last in the Lombardy Region headquarters in Milan. Of these forums, only the program and slides of the scheduled interventions of the experts are available. On the other hand, some conclusions emerged from the Forums from the final report. For example, on the first point, the need emerges for a permanent (continuous and constant) system of relationships organized at various levels and commensurate with the different responsibilities to be organized by strengthening and improving the models in place. Most of the interviewees believe that it is necessary to work to reduce uncertainty but that it cannot be completely eliminated, therefore, it is essential to know it and communicate it adequately to the various actors. The implementation of these actions can contribute to strengthening and extending a culture of risk to all levels of government involved. On the second point, it is unanimously highlighted the need to communicate that hydraulic works are not able to cancel the risk and that, like all structural works, they are subject to deterioration. Therefore, to ensure constant project performance, they must be subject to constant maintenance interventions; adjusted if necessary; certified through standardized procedures or alternatively with constant periodic checks; even using innovative technologies and citizens must be informed about the residual risk conditions in the context of Civil Protection actions Compared to the fourth forum, it emerged that up to now the dominant interpretation has considered and treated rivers as artificial canals instead of real and its own ecosystems. The need for a paradigm change is highlighted, the sustainable solution must in fact be sought in restoring and revitalizing the geomorphological and ecological functionality of the river system, in its complexity and in its becoming. Giving more space to watercourses does not only mean defending oneself from floods but promoting conscious and sustainable land uses, improving environmental conditions in general, generating diversity of habitats and landscapes, conserving and improving fundamental ecosystem services (AdbPo-a, 2016 , pp. 10-11).
After the publication of the plan, from 22 June 2014 to 22 December, the Authority received only the written observations, which can be forwarded via e-mail on forms prepared for closed and open questions (AdBPo, 2012, p. 8).
2.2 - Regional level - Phase 2
After the activities at the district level (1.2), the presentation of the first draft of the plan in the regions and sub-basins began at the end of May, in conference mode and after the summer further workshops on specific topics started.
2.2 - Emilia-Romagna - Phase 2
Emilia-Romagna in particular, always supported by Futour SaS, organized 3 workshops using in one of these the World Café called for the occasion Flow Café, in addition to the Digital Mosaic, Lego Serious Play and Idea Boxes (Franceschini, 2016, p . 35-38). On these occasions held in September-October 2015, issues such as the design of cooperation models between actors for risk management, the maintenance of waterways and canals, the alert system and emergency planning were addressed. ; furthermore, prior to the event, each participant was provided with popular publications called "participant's diary" (Ercoli, 2015) which offered a thematic introduction, an illustration of the entire path, a glossary, also relating to the tools of participation that were going to be used. The workshops made it possible to interact with a number of participants ranging from 60 to over 100 (Ib. P. 36-38). In addition to participation in the presence, there was an online channel for receiving reports by post, an online forum open on the permanent platform Io Partecipo + which followed the entire process, where, in addition to the telematic center, all the information, documents, the calendar of appointments and some summary videos that introduced the topic and the salient issues. Finally, 4 online surveys with closed answers were prepared, taking inspiration from the issues that also emerged in the workshops. The most participated poll scored 73 votes and concerned the preferred ways in which one would like to be alerted in an emergency (text message, TV and radio, etc ...), obtaining a good number of responses for all channels: 26% for sms; 20% TV and radio; as well as 20% for Smartphone App and Social Networks; 17% for institutional websites; while the last with 15% were the luminous panels (Franceschini, 2016, p. 63). Other responses to surveys have indicated the school as the best place to train in risk prevention and the reporting of abandoned, bulky material or vegetation that can hinder the flow, as a citizen's contribution to the maintenance of waterways (Ib. Pp. . 62 - 65).
The first Flow Café is a participatory laboratory that was held in Ferrara as part of the "RamTech" fair, an event in the sector of environmental remediation and redevelopment of the territory. The event called Flow Café instead of World Café (to recall the theme of flooding) was organized by targeted invitation (to representatives of companies, scientific institutions, 3 representatives of the voluntary sector, one of the environmentalists) and consisted of free conversations and debate and creative on the theme of river and coastal systems management - in the rotating mode of the World Café - in the presence of the leading experts in the field, the most representative associations and the most innovative companies in the sector (Franceschini, p. 29). The meeting was attended by 33 experts representing associations, sector companies, universities and public bodies and 25 members of the Control Room. The Flow Café was organized for activities in small groups (6 participants and 2 facilitators) to arrive at the identification of proposals for a regional action plan for cooperation in risk management. The questions with Digital Mosaic on which the members of the tables worked were: 1. We describe examples of good practices and existing experiences of cooperation for the management of flood risk (prevention, protection, preparation, return to normality and analysis); 2. We identify five priorities for improving cooperation for flood risk management (Ib., P. 30).
These questions were elaborated and defined by the Control Room during the numerous preparatory meetings for the Workshop. In the workshop, the Digital Mosaic (MODÌ) was adopted. From the ideas, suggestions, examples of good practices listed, we moved on to define the actions, policies, and then order them according to a scale of priorities. The second session "concerned the development of prototypes and (public-private) cooperation projects on risk management in its four components: prevention, protection, preparation, return to normality and analysis. The topics analyzed in this second prototyping phase are states: 1. How to strengthen the sharing of experiences and knowledge; 2. How to enhance and find human and financial resources; 3. How to strengthen multidisciplinarity in risk management, also involving the human and medical sciences; 4. How to raise awareness of the concept risk and communicate it; territorial safety and environmental protection: how to promote cooperation between companies and institutions "(Ib., p. 30). In this phase, the tools of the LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® and Idea Boxes® were used, at the discretion of the groups. Following the questions dealt with by MODI 'it was possible to organize a rapid prototyping laboratory in which each participant was asked to develop ideas, projects and proposals for the future. The rapid prototyping method allows you to quickly visualize the processes, phases and possible implications to identify strengths and weaknesses and to be able to introduce any improvements. While it is quite simple to have ideas, any change process requires the adoption and implementation of ideas and innovations "(RER, 2015, Flow Café, pp. 11-17). The prototypes were collected in minutes and cards set up as in 'following example: Theme chosen: 3. How to strengthen multidisciplinarity in risk management, also involving the human and medical sciences - Modalities chosen: 4 Lego, 2 cards, Idea Box; Objective: The project proposes different actions, to be applied in various phases of the flood risk management cycle. It also identifies the need to promote the "networking" of the skills available at the territorial offices (local bodies) of the professional associations, allowing a direct and horizontal relationship between the orders and bodies responsible for risk management, in the different phases. The innovative participation of specific professional figures such as sociologists and psychologists is aimed at encouraging the involvement of citizens (in particular those "affected by the event" and the most fragile sections of the population who are unlikely to participate) in all phases of risk management; Brief description: In the various phases of the flood risk management cycle it is appropriate to think (in "peacetime") in terms of costs / benefits, proceeding with a multi-criteria evaluation of alternative proposals relating (for example) to structural interventions for risk mitigation, emergency management planning choices. In the phase of returning to normality, it is also appropriate to involve those who have been touched by the event, to truly share the choices (how and to whom to reimburse the damages, what choices to make on the works, how to reorganize the civil protection system, etc.) and favor an increase in resilience; Main aspects of the project: Coordination between professional associations and direct involvement in all phases of the risk management cycle; Members of the table: with the names and organizations to which the various participants belong (RER, 2015, p. 40).
In the workshop held in Forlì, also conducted by Futour on October 15, 2015, the World Café was used. The participants were divided into 8 working groups, called to discuss the theme "What does maintenance of waterways, canals and the coast mean for you?". In a few tens of minutes, 65 ideas and suggestions arrived from over 100 participants (professionals, public administrators, representatives of associations, companies and citizens). Also in this case, in the second part, actions were prototyped to answer the question "how to raise awareness" and "how to collaborate" for the maintenance of the canals and the coast. 6 prototypes of actions were presented (eg "adopt a river", "I'm broke", "live the river, long live the river") (Franceschini, 2016). In the Parma workshop, on 23 October 2015, more than 100 people (79 citizens, 11 observers, as well as local officials and members of the control room, public administrators from other areas of the region, ecological guards and associations, Civil Protection, Croce Rossa, Consorzio Bonifica Parmense and citizens, including a small group of members of the committees of the flood victims) worked for over 3 hours together with the experts on a very important issue because the city was hit by a flood event in October 2014. In the first part, performed with the aid of the digital mosaic, the participants provided 55 contributions answering the question: through which tools do you become aware of a weather alert and what do you do as a result? The second part of the meeting was dedicated to prototyping . The participants told their idea by creating figured images with the Idea Boxes method. There were 8 working groups, 4 discussed the theme: "A Municipal Emergency Plan usable for citizens: what tools and what actions?" and 4 others the theme: "How can we inform ourselves and prepare ourselves for a flood event?" (Ib., Pp. 31-33). Outcomes emerged from the workshops that strengthened the measures to be included in the Plan with a collaborative spirit and a further request for participatory tools also during the drafting of watercourse maintenance and emergency programs, specifically two proposals were: "Promote pilot projects for the ordinary maintenance of watercourses through structured agreements between institutions and citizens, individuals and associates "and" Create workshops designed to meet institutions and businesses in the field of technological innovation in risk management ". (Franceschini, 2016, p. 35). On the first issue, a further workshop was then effectively organized on 4 February 2016 in Piacenza entitled "The participatory maintenance of waterways and reclamation canals: proposals and ideas from the territory", in which the foundations were laid for the creation of a maintenance pilot project scheme (ib.).
2.2 - Other regions - Phase 2
In Lombardy, in the second phase, only one public information seminar on the progress of the plan was organized, in Milan on 23/6/15, where over 200 people participated plus another 260 watched the online streaming. In the seminar, those present were informed of the tools used in the previous phases and of the data relating to the investigation, articulated in the meetings on the territories (see above, 2.0 Other regions phase 1) and of the observations received by e-mail through the questionnaire cards prepared before the dating. In total 96 comments were received, mostly from municipalities (79). Therefore, examples of timely results were presented with respect to the updating of the risk maps which were subsequently all included in the online map database Geoportale of Lombardy. It too and its operation were presented to the public. Finally, a second questionnaire was submitted with links to the AdBPo pages. The questionnaire addressed to the general public concerned risk perception information and required priority indications on some prevention, emergency measures, etc. (Occhi, 2015). On this, the following results were obtained, in summary: according to all the respondents, the priority of the policies must be assigned to prevention, although the other actions must not be neglected. Among the prevention measures listed, all have been indicated on a par (prohibiting the location of new elements in floodable areas, demolishing / relocating vulnerable elements in flood areas, interventions to reduce vulnerability, improve technical-scientific knowledge on the subject); among the protection measures the natural management of floods at the basin scale and maintenance actions of the defense structures prevail; there are no major differences between emergency preparedness measures, in particular the improvement of institutional response plans in the event of flooding is highlighted in the graph (by increasing the proportions); finally, with respect to the responses to return to normality, the main priority concerns environmental restoration, the responses to return to social and individual normality and follow the insurance policies and the analysis of phenomena (AdBPo, 2016, pp. 7 - 9).
In Piedmont a final seminar was held in Turin on 11 June and another in Domodossola on 3 July, at the request of the municipalities. From the page you can download the slides of the interventions (link 4). No further information is provided in this regard.
In Veneto only one public meeting was held in Verona on April 14, 2015 (link 6). No further information is provided in this regard.
Influence, Outcomes, and Effects
From the numerous measures adopted by the Plan, it seems that the observations and requests that emerged from the consultation phase have been widely acknowledged (AdbPo-c, 2016). The measures are divided by location, objective, name of the measure, responsible body, priority category and a code (eg at the district level, with the aim of improving risk knowledge, the definition of a morphological monitoring intervention program and solid transport of river beds, with a very high priority, code ITN008-PAI-004). The implementation took place through a wide involvement of the technical bodies and some consultative moments organized and supervised by them. No tools for mass involvement or conflict resolution on polarized issues have been adopted but a win-win approach filtered by technicians has been opted for. This obviously made the implementation of the requests opaque, eliminating any conflict of a political nature on the issue.
The regions that should have organized participation at the local level gave different answers. Some regions (Liguria and Veneto) less affected by the Po Basin have carried out regular technical work by adding some public meetings (Veneto). Piedmont, on the other hand, despite the large territory concerned, inexplicably showed the least interest in participatory aspects, organizing seminars to present risk maps, but in one case (Domodossola) the municipalities had to specifically request this meeting, otherwise not programmed. They probably did not believe that the technicality of the issue was manageable by citizenship and its organizations in a productive way.
The greatest contribution is certainly attributable to the technical observations received from the numerous and various technical design offices available to the various authorities (hydraulic, environmental and urban planning) and institutions present in the vast Po Valley area. These are map updates which, when they directly concern the population, are very specific issues that involve individuals or small groups of owners with whom the technical departments then engage in targeted communication, hardly this happens in the opposite direction, if not on the occasion of events. disastrous. The measures reported in the Plan are numerous and seem to have largely acknowledged the requests and proposals produced in the participatory processes. It was difficult to understand if there is a traceability of the same. There is a code but it is not clear how to link it to the documents produced in the path (link 1).
With regard to the regional level, there are those who have been more punctual. Emillia-Romagna has prepared a table in which for each question raised by the participants in the workshops was associated a feedback on how they have or did not find translation in the measures of the plan (Franceschini, 2016, p. 41-44) without however inserting references precise to the reports (eg by indicating the chapters or page numbers where the matches were found). All the regions have made available a document dedicated to their contribution to the revision of the plan (eg that of Lombardy: AdbPo-b, 2016) which contains: the description of the consultation process, of the territorial technical meetings, the table of observations received (also collected via online questionnaire) and the list of changes to the plan and in particular to the maps (correcting many representation errors) making a fundamental update to the reliability of the data (Ib.). In addition, some proposed actions were immediately launched in 2016 with the setting up of a "pilot project scheme" for collaboration between institutions and citizens in the maintenance of waterways (see above, 2.2).
From the reading of the documents, however, no strong conflicts emerge between the stakeholders and the technicians. It seems that they all agree in the objective and priorities, which have not manifested large differences between them in the surveys and polls carried out. A more in-depth investigation of stakeholders, in particular environmental associations and committees of flooded inhabitants, would be needed.
"At the end of this process of participation, the request emerged, as constantly represented in the various meetings, to create a permanent system of relations organized at various levels and commensurate with the various responsibilities, to be organized by strengthening and structuring the current existing models. of this system would be to develop an appropriate risk culture, as an essential prerequisite for an effective flood management policy capable of integrating the actions of preparation, protection, forecasting and return to normality. course of the management of the PGRA (2015-2021), as a priority the consolidation of the relationships established during the drafting of the Plan "(AdBPo-a, 2016, p. 15).
Analysis and Lessons Learned
The plan of a river basin as large as that of the Po, conducted with participatory methods, once again shows how the geographical vastness is not necessarily a factor hindering participation, just as the theme, its technicality and complexity are not. First of all, these processes make it even clearer how different disciplines must collaborate with each other and connect at different scales to continuously improve the collective information and cognitive base, also including stakeholders, inhabitants, residents and visitors of the river areas as providers of local knowledge. , detailed, fundamental. The effort carried out by the Basin Authority and some regions was important; perhaps due to the matter dealt with and the harmony in tackling the problem, general confidence is not yet completely destroyed, despite the periodic liquid disasters that hit the inhabitants of the area. Consultation can also become a democratically pragmatic and reasonable approach on issues like this; fundamentally this consists in a democratic entrustment, to a delegation to a small group of qualified people, to plan, who are technicians aware of their cognitive limitations and convinced that the inclusion of all interested parties is necessary so that a company can adapt without having to submit to unsustainable dangers. It is to be verified whether there have been conflicting nodes on the priorities that have simply been resolved by the technical filter of the hydraulic authorities, given, for all the regions, apart from Emilia-Romagna, a shortage in the minutes: conflicts not significant enough such as to justify the non-use of participatory tools for selecting preferences with greater representativeness. The online surveys, activated by the Emilia-Romagna Region, if they had been drawn up with questions centered on the most conflicting aspects, if there was better access control, if they were disseminated and promoted by the municipalities themselves, could have played this role. This is a case in which technicians are willing to give only part of their authority to the processes, up to the consultative level (AdBPo, 2011; RER, 2014); the conflicts that may emerge (eg residential and productive activities and the need to give more space to rivers) are therefore filtered and resolved by their interpretation and intermediation, which obviously also includes knowledge of the regulations on what it is possible (not) to do today and therefore it could open to what could be changed.
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