Co-producing insights in Cape Town and Barcelona: Jam and Justice on tour

Mistra Urban Futures in Cape Town and IOPD in Barcelona

Academic and practitioner researchers are travelling to Cape Town and Barcelona in November to share collective insights from the Jam and Justice project, as part of a delegation from the Realising Just Cities programme. They will be joined by strategy and policy leads from Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), who seek to learn more about co-production for urban governance and participatory decision-making.

Co-production in Cape Town (5-7 November)

In Cape Town, Mistra Urban Future’s Realising Just Cities group is convening a conference on Comparative Co-production, sharing reflections from research in South Africa, Kenya, Sweden and the UK. Katie Finney of Amity HCD will be watching closely, looking for ideas to bring back to Manchester.

Katie has been a member of Jam and Justice’s Action Research Collective since its inception in 2016, and shares responsibility for taking forward the ARC’s plans to a support a coalition of actors working towards a more co-productive city-region.

“I’m looking forward to putting what Jam and Justice is doing into a bigger context, seeing how it fits alongside other international work on co-production. And I’m aiming to share some of my learning with the Action Research Collective and others on Twitter. Watch out for #CoProduceGM!”—Katie Finney

View the conference programme:

Direct Democracy and Citizen Initiative in Barcelona (25-27 November)

Later in November, Barcelona will host the International Observatory on Participatory Democracy’s 18th conference. The IOPD2018 programme is packed, but thanks to generous funding from Mistra Urban Futures both Alice Toomer-McAlpine and Katie Finney will be there to gather and exchange information.

The programme includes a workshop to share lessons from research in Greater Manchester, and pick up fresh ideas (131-E). Alice and Katie will be facilitating, along with University of Sheffield researchers Beth Perry and Bertie Russell and GMCA’s David Rogerson and Jacob Botham, who will also be taking notes on the possibilities for increased citizen participation.

The schedule also includes a field trip to Metadecidim, the annual get-together for the programmers behind Barcelona’s online democracy hub.

“Attending Metadecidim will be a brilliant opportunity to see how digital democratic innovation is being done elsewhere in the world and take that inspiration back to a local context with GM Decides”—Alice Toomer - McAlpine

Here is the abstract for Jam and Justice’s workshop (taking place on Tuesday 27 November, at midday):

How to co-produce the city: lessons for and from Greater Manchester

This workshop is designed and delivered by a coalition of local government actors and action researchers who are interested in what tools, tactics and practices can help coproduce the city. Do we need statements of values or basic standards which set down the principles that coproduction should meet? What can we learn from social innovations or experiments in coproduction? Should Greater Manchester develop a coproduction strategy or an action plan? And if so, who should own it? We would like to discuss these questions in an “open workshop” with other municipalities that are interested in the same issues. Have other cities developed coproduction strategies or action plans? How have these been produced? What effect have they had? What other tools, tactics and practices have been used to coproduce the city?

View the full IOPD 2018 programme on their website:

These international learning opportunities are funded by Mistra Urban Futures as part of the Realising Just Cities programme.