Thursday, 12 January 2012

People's paradigm

The idea to get lots of people involved in saying what they want Bristol to be like in the medium and long term is a really good one. See 'Occupy Bristol protesters draw up their vision for Bristol 2050'. There's no meaningful, democratic and effective medium and long term planning in the UK and this clearly needs to change. The intentions of Occupy Bristol are a bit different from the Post headline though - since Occupy advocate wide participation it wont be 'their' vision as such, it will be the visions of the people that come forward to make contributions. So, its over to Bristol's people...send your ideas to occupybristol@riseup.net  I very strongly agree that wider public participation means better decisions, not least because its more likely that local knowledge and good sense is included and people will have ownership of actions that result (as any exercise needs to go beyond ideas) and back them up in their own lives. Here's the story in the Post: 
PLANS to create a vision for the type of place people would like Bristol to be in 2050 will be discussed by protestors on College Green.


The Occupy Bristol camp is planning a series of open meetings to plan a future for the city.

A protester, who gave his name as Luther Blissett, said: "Neither the electoral cycle nor the product planning horizon are far enough away to allow us to be utopian, to hope for better futures. There is very little thinking about the medium and long term.



"The people's 2050 will try to inhabit this vacuum.


"It will not be a top-down document or plan that anyone tries to rigidly enforce, it will not be in that sense 'The Plan'. It will simply be a conversation that develops, spawning hundreds of little plans, counter plans and, crucially, actions.


"We hope that by looking forward 40 years we can provide a platform for the people of Bristol to come up with some interesting ideas about how we want our city and society to be organised."


This project has been inspired by the existing Bristol 2050 project but protesters say that only references the city's business leaders and should include the public.


Mr Blissett added: "There's plenty of evidence that wider public participation in decision-making means better decisions – because it means more knowledge and ideas go into the mix. The people's 2050 is an alternate vision, and we want your input."


The group asked people to send "utopian hopes and desires for Bristol 2050" in word or picture form to occupybristol@riseup.net.

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