Citizen participation is at the heart of public actions and policies. The implementation of qualitative participatory processes upstream and at the key stages of projects is a guarantee of enhanced quality and greater social cohesion. The point of having citizen participation in the process of co-creating the clean.brussels strategy is that the inhabitants of the Brussels Region have collective lived expertise with regard to public cleanliness, resulting from their experience of life in the local communities. In this spirit, the clean.brussels strategy has benefited from the contributions and views of the Brussels population, through two participation mechanisms:
- Initially, a survey was widely disseminated through social media between 16 March and 30 April 2022, with around 30 closed questions to measure the sensitivity of residents and users to public cleanliness. At the end of this questionnaire, respondents had the opportunity to share their suggestions for improving public cleanliness in the Brussels-Capital Region. Through the use of different communication channels, 3,658 people ended up responding to the online survey (including 2,913 people who completed the survey in full: 8 % Dutch-speakers, 25 % English-speakers, 67 % French-speakers). The survey results can be found in Appendix 6.
- In a second phase, the people who took part in the survey had the opportunity to register for a discussion forum to discuss the issues in greater depth. The forums took place over two mornings, on 7 and 21 May 2022, and were attended by around 30 people. The results of the forums can be found in Appendix 7.
As a result, in the text of the clean.brussels strategy, the measures supported most strongly by citizens are highlighted by means of the logo ‘backed by the public’.