What is it about?

This paper investigates how the design of the digital platform Decide Madrid impacted the collaborative practices involved in digital participatory budgeting. We found that the design of the platform made the interaction competitive, where individuals sought to gain votes for their single proposals, rather than consider the relations across proposals and the larger context of the city decisions, even if the institutional process rewarded collective support. In this way, the platforms’ design led to forms of individualistic, competitive, and static participation, therefore limiting the possibilities for empowering citizens in scoping and self-regulating participatory budgeting collaboratively.

Featured Image

Why is it important?

Participatory Democracies rely on digital platforms to allow citizens to participate and make decisions. Participatory budgeting is an instrument that allows people to decide how public budgeting is done. A large corpus of literature investigates participatory budgeting and elaborates on its values and challenges. However, there is limited research that investigates digital participatory budgeting and how using a digital platform impacts how proposals are made. In concrete, in this paper, we focus on the collaborative aspects and how the platform design (e.g., interface design choices) supports or hinders participation and collaboration.


This paper reports an example of how a digital platform was used to facilitate participatory budgeting. It shows that designing such a platform is not trivial at all and there is a need to investigate how the interface design supports, or hinders, participation

Maria Menendez Blanco
Libera Universita di Bolzano

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Designing Digital Participatory Budgeting Platforms: Urban Biking Activism in Madrid, Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW), September 2022, Springer Science + Business Media,
DOI: 10.1007/s10606-022-09443-6.
You can read the full text:



The following have contributed to this page