The City of Copenhagen is the first Danish municipality to introduce a longer-term citizens' jury. Running as a pilot project over a period of two years, the mini public allows 36 randomly selected citizens to contribute ideas, recommendations and solutions for the future of the city in a process called Københavnerting.
"More Copenhageners need to be involved in the development of our city. They are the ones who live there, they are the ones who know it, they are the ones who love it. I am very much looking forward to hearing ideas and recommendations on what we should focus on in the future if we want to develop a city for all," said Mayor Sophie Hæstorp Andersen when announcing the project on 2 February 2023.
Developing Copenhagen together
For 2023, the overarching question for the Copenhagen Citizens' Jury's work is: "How can we develop Copenhagen together with well-being and space for all?" In 2024, new participants will be selected for the ctizens' jury. They will develop recommendations on a new question that has not yet been decided.
50,000 randomly selected Copenhagen residents were invited to participate in the citizens' jury by email on 3 February 2023. The 36 seats will be allocated using the stratified lottery system. In this process, participation criteria such as age, gender, education level and place of residence ensure that the jury is a mini-Copenhagen in terms of population composition.
Strengthen dialogue and cooperation
The recommendations developed in the citizens' jury are presented to the public and then discussed in and responded to by the City Council. The aim of the Københavnerting is to strengthen dialogue and cooperation between Copenhagen citizens and the City of Copenhagen with regard to the development of the city.
"We Do Democracy" was chosen as the process facilitator. Their citizens' jury experts are involved in both the preparation and the implementation of the citizens' jury itself. The mini public in Copenhagen, together with permanent citizens' assemblies in Brussels and Paris, is one of the first multi-year big city experiments with deliberative democracy. This will include the establishment and training of a democracy team among the employees of the Copenhagen administration.
In connection with the launch of the Copenhagen Citizens' Jury, the city has developed a website that will be a platform for a number of initiatives by the municipality to strengthen citizen participation.
Read more: Københavnertinget