Citizen engagement for Esch-Schifflange site co-creation

emotional reactions recorded

citizen needs identified

inputs on regional identity crowdsourced

citizens contributing

Agora has hired us to develop and implement the strategy of citizens engagement for its ‘citizen day’ at the Esch-Schifflange site. The aim was to include the citizens in the process of urban planning concept development (Entwurfswerkstatt) held from 29 March to 5 April 2019, and specifically to raise citizens’ awareness about the new site, inform them about the project, learn about their needs, regional identity perceptions and collect their emotions linked to the site. The Impact Lab was asked to develop a methodology for citizen engagement, focusing especially on the ‘citizen day’ on Saturday 30 March 2019. The ultimate objective was to use the results of the process as an important input to the work of four international professional teams co-creating the first concept of the site.

We aligned the citizen engagement process with the selected guiding questions (‘Leitfragen’) of the whole co-creation process to ensure the results would be easy to integrate into the work of the four teams:
– what are the citizens’ perspectives on the region’s identity?
– what are the people’s needs regarding new living, leisure and working concepts?
– what are the citizens’ emotions linked to different elements of the site’s industrial heritage?
Our goal was not collaboration leading to a specific consensus but rather a broad, unrestricted co-creation of citizens as individuals. Therefore, we chose a combination of crowdsourcing techniques, facilitated needs identification and guided tours to record citizen emotions in situ as our main methods. Science-based data analysis techniques (e.g. quantitative word cloud) were used in combination with summaries compiled by our professional facilitators, to consolidate the collected data and present it visually to the teams.

More than a hundred people participated in the ‘citizen day’, from morning presentations, through guided tours, to co-creation exercises. It was so inspiring to see so many people of very different backgrounds, young and senior alike, to come, take part in the tours, and express their opinions and ideas. We have collected more than a thousand data points concerning the Red Rock Region identity, the needs for the future and the emotions the site evoked, all to serve as important sources for the four professional teams and other specialists to work on the project. More record from the project can be found at website.