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Along with CitizenLab, the Brussels-Capital Region is launching a participatory platform: the “Brussels Hacks the crisis”-project !

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The Brussels Regional Informatics Centre (BRIC) has joined forces with the Brussels startup CitizenLab and the Open Knowledge Foundation to develop a practical participation project. Using the CitizenLab platform, Brussels residents can help shape their city and region after Covid-19 and the lockdown period. The Open Summer of Code form Open Knowledge will then proceed to convert these ideas into a real-world app prototype.


From 5 June, everyone can discover this brand-new citizen participation platform by and for the Brussels-Capital Region at participate.smartcity.brussels. CitizenLabs' solution enables the Brussels authorities to make their decision-making more democratic, transparent and collaborative. It also means that every Brussels resident can participate in the policy.

The development and management of this platform are founded upon a collaboration between the Brussels Regional Informatics Centre and CitizenLab, a Brussels startup. The solutions from this Brussels-based software company will bring local authorities and citizens closer together. The Brussels-Capital Region is also explicitly committed to this objective, which has led to a very concrete participatory initiative: until 21 June, the residents of Brussels will be able to put forward their ideas on how their city and region should look after the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown. The Region wants to involve its population as much as possible in the search for the ideal post-Covid city, by means of specific suggestions and poll pages, divided into a number of themes: new way of working, new way of learning, local commerce, culture, and solidarity. With participate.smartcity.brussels, all the inhabitants of Brussels will have a real tool at their disposal for passing on, assessing and commenting on their post-Covid and lockdown initiatives.

The two strongest ideas – one selected on the basis of a popular poll and another by a jury of experts – will then serve as the inspiration for a prototype, which will be developed during the Open Summer of Code (https://summerofcode.be/) in July. In that month, Belgian students will develop those two ideas into a working app prototype, with the necessary information and feedback windows for the residents of Brussels. On the demo day – scheduled for 30 July – the teams will present their digital solution, through which Brussels can then shape itself post-Covid.