The Citizen Conference on Climate Policy (Bürgerdialog zum Klimaschutzplan 2050) was initiated by the German ministry of the environment as part of a series of environmental consultations. Across 1 day, 472 citizens created recommendations for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Problems and Purpose
The aim of the citizen conference was to elaborate concrete proposals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in five domains: agriculture, transports, industry and services, energy, and construction sector.
Background History and Context
In preparation of the Paris agreement on climate and of a government plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (to be enacted in 2016), the Ministry of the Environment initiated a series of consultations in two phases, starting in late 2015. The first phase involved “stakeholders,” i.e. representatives from Bundesländer, communes, civil society organizations and business associations, among which 13 where selected to work on policy recommendations. The second phase was a citizen conference involving 472 randomly selected citizens.
Organizing, Supporting, and Funding Entities
The Ministry of the Environment organized this initiative.
Participant Recruitment and Selection
Participants were randomly selected using phone books in the five aforementioned cities and their surroundings (no quotas were applied). The response rate was about 3%.
Methods and Tools Used
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What Went On: Process, Interaction, and Participation
The process combined face-to-face meetings that took place at the same time in five German cities (Hamburg, Leipzig, Essen, Frankfurt, Nürnberg) and online discussions, which took place on a dedicated web platform and allowed the public to comment on recommendations and propose amendments, and participants to vote on proposals. This resulted in 77 policy recommendations, which were amended and completed by a second deliberative body including 13 “stakeholders” and 12 citizens randomly drawn among participants of the regional conferences. This smaller body was in charge with elaborating the final policy proposals.
Influence, Outcomes, and Effects
The process resulted in 77 policy recommendations, 52 of which were ultimately part of the government's climate protection plan.
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Analysis and Lessons Learned
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This entry is based on the POLITICIZE dataset. More information can be found at the following links:
- Paulis, Emilien; Pilet, Jean-Benoit; Panel, Sophie; Vittori, Davide; Close, Caroline, 2020, "POLITICIZE Dataset", https://doi.org/10.7910/DVN/Z7X6GT, Harvard Dataverse, V1
- Pilet J-B, Paulis E, Panel S.,Vitori D & Close C. 202X The POLITICIZE Dataset: an inventory of Deliberative Mini-Publics (DMPs) in Europe. European Political Science.