date_range Starts on February 1, 2016
event_note End date March 7, 2016
list 5 sequences
assignment Level : Introductive
chat_bubble_outline Language : English
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Key informations

credit_card Free access
verified_user Free certificate
timer 10 hours in total

About the content

Government works best when citizens are directly engaged in policymaking and public service delivery. What conditions are necessary for inclusive and effective citizen engagement? Can it positively improve people's lives? This course provides an overview of citizen engagement, critically analyzing how it can be leveraged most effectively to achieve development results.

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Syllabus

Overview
The overview will provide a course roadmap and explain the rationale behind this course—why this topic, and why now?

Week 1: Citizen Engagement: What It Is and Why It Matters
This week examines the theoretical underpinnings of citizen engagement and how it can lead to better development results. We begin by exploring the definitions and history of citizen engagement, as well as related concepts such as transparency, accountability, responsiveness and inclusiveness. We then look at the concept of the feedback loop, and the differences between intrinsic and instrumental approaches. Next we examine the crucial role of sociopolitical context and the enabling environment, and finally introduce the concept of strategic and tactical approaches to citizen engagement.

Week 2: Engaging Citizens for Improved Policymaking
This week explores the role that citizens can play in actively shaping public policy. We start by examining how citizens participate, analyzing the differences between ‘thick’ and ‘thin’ forms of engagement and asking strategic questions such as who should participate, how should participants interact with decision makers, what information do participants need, and how will participation impact policy decisions. Next, we survey examples of crowdsourcing and open innovation that are helping governments and citizens better interact. Finally, we unpack why citizens participate, moving beyond the mere calculation of costs and benefits described in the rational choice model to an analysis of broader factors that influence participation.

Week 3: Can Engaging Citizens Bring Better Services?
In this week we examine the role of citizen engagement in public service delivery. We first unpack different conceptions of the government-citizen relationship and then explore the ways citizens can serve as active agents of, rather than passive recipients in, the delivery of public services. We then provide an in-depth look at a range of citizen engagement projects in this area by exploring the methods, tools, barriers to inclusion and factors for success of case studies, particularly in developing country contexts.

Week 4: Innovations in Citizen Engagement
Having outlined the role of citizen engagement during policymaking and service delivery, the final week investigates recent innovations in citizen engagement. We begin by examining how recent advances in information and communications technology (ICT) can be used to enhance citizen engagement from a human development perspective, and review some of the most compelling new developments in this area. Next, we explore the reasons why some of these innovative approaches succeed while others fail, and look at how hybrid approaches-those that combine ICT tools with traditional methodologies-are being used in an attempt to maximize development results.

Week 5: Citizen Engagement in Practice
The last module of this course analyzes citizen engagement in practice. We hear from local practitioners implementing different citizen engagement approaches in various sectors including water, health, and education in Ghana and Kenya. They discuss how citizen engagement mechanisms and tools are adapted for their specific country context and sector, examining practical challenges and lessons learned. We also look at Korea’s innovative approach to involving citizens in the audit of public services.

We conclude the course with a review video, as well as ‘call to action’ videos from high-profile leaders in government, civil society and academia and to provide you with tangible next steps to put your knowledge into practice.

Course Tracks

Depending on your level of interest, you can choose to participate in one of two tracks:

  • Track 1: Citizen Engagement Champions (1-2 hours/week)
  • Track 2: Policy and Leadership (2-4 hours/week)
Students can move from the Citizen Engagement Champions track to the Policy and Leadership track at any point during the course. We encourage students to join the Policy and Leadership track to gain deeper knowledge and practical experience.

Track 1 – Citizen Engagement Champions

    Target Audience
    This track is suitable for anyone with a general interest in citizen engagement. It provides insight into underlying concepts and current trends in citizen engagement, and the ways in which it can be utilized to improve development results.

    Track-Specific Objectives
    • To understand the theoretical underpinnings of citizen engagement and why it is a critical component of good governance.
    • To evaluate current citizen engagement initiatives for development around the world.

    Assignments
    • Assignments focus on facilitating an understanding of mandatory course material (video talks and core readings) through multiple choice quizzes and peer-reviewed short answer responses.
    • Optional exercises are also suggested.

Track 2 – Policy and Leadership

    Target Audience
    This track is designed for those wishing to gain greater practical experience in citizen engagement, as well as to develop networks of practice with counterparts from around the world. Our hope is that this track will catalyze the launch of real-world initiatives.

    Track-Specific Objectives
    • To understand the theoretical underpinnings of citizen engagement and why it is a critical component of good governance.
    • To evaluate current citizen engagement initiatives for development around the world.
    • To build networks of practice and catalyze collaboration among students.
    • To allow students an opportunity to design and create a citizen engagement project that could be implemented in their community.

    Assignments
    • Assignments focus on facilitating an understanding of mandatory course material (video talks and core readings) through multiple choice quizzes and peer-reviewed short answer responses.
    • Students must also design a citizen engagement project and represent it creatively online through a digital artifact.
    • Optional exercises are also suggested.

Connect

Participants are encouraged to communicate and share resources via Twitter—using hashtag #CitizensEngage— and meetup.com. Sign up for a free accounts for these services at http://www.twitter.com and http://www.meetup.com/.
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Intructors

  • Helene Grandvoinnet
  • Jeff Thindwa
  • Tiago Peixoto
  • Björn-Sören Gigler
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Content designer

The World Bank Group is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. We support developing countries through policy advice, research and analysis, and technical assistance. Our analytical work often underpins World Bank Group financing and helps inform developing countries’ own investments. The Leadership, Learning and Innovation (LLI) is a global connector of knowledge, learning and innovation. LLI translates global knowledge into evidence-based learning programs, including e-learning and MOOCs, knowledge exchange, and some combination of these with traditional face-to-face learning.
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Platform

Coursera is a digital company offering massive open online course founded by computer teachers Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller Stanford University, located in Mountain View, California. 

Coursera works with top universities and organizations to make some of their courses available online, and offers courses in many subjects, including: physics, engineering, humanities, medicine, biology, social sciences, mathematics, business, computer science, digital marketing, data science, and other subjects.

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