The Parliamentwatch (PW) network consists of 6 EU and 3 non-EU member organizations that promote accountability and civic participation in parliamentary politics through innovative digital technology. Our aim is to scale the model across Europe and inspire citizen participation.
Berlin, Germany, Athens, Greece, Europe
Opinion polls show widespread citizens’ disrespect of political institutions, euroscepticism and pessimism about the future of Europe. Arguably, this originates from a lack of both citizen engagement and transparency in politics. While voters are given the chance to elect representatives every few years, there are almost no means for citizens to ensure that politicians abide to the promises made prior to elections. We as PW have created a model for several EU and non-EU countries that allows citizens to be in a direct public dialogue with their representatives before and after elections, thus allowing citizens to partake in everyday politics and moreover create a public professional history for each politician to document conflicting interests and changing opinions well and independently.
Primarily, our goal is to spread our idea and encourage citizens, NGO’s and governments around the world to learn about and replicate our model. Secondly, we aim to strengthen the PW network by sharing best practices among its members and counselling new initiatives in their efforts to set up local organizations. Ultimately, our vision is to strengthen parliamentary democracy across Europe, promote a common European identity through transnational cooperation and foster active citizenship by helping bridge the gap between citizens and politicians, as well as promoting parliamentary openness.
1. Build a common website containing a presentation of the network, a blog on most important developments and a "how-to" tool-kit section for how to set up a PW initiative. 2. Organize a 3-day Annual Meeting in Brussels to exchange best practices. The event would include introducing MEP’s to our concept and engaging them as ambassadors where PW does not yet exist. 3. Expand the network by inviting local teams that are in the process of setting up PW initiatives to join the Annual Meeting and take advantage of the existing know-how. 4. Produce a short documentary about our movement presenting the network and the concept behind PW. This documentary will aim to inspire similar initiatives, to raise awareness of the importance of active citizenship, transparency and accountability in politics.
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