Citizen proposals

2.1 Citizen proposals

2.1.1 What is it for?

The proposals module is designed to collect citizen proposals that require a specific number of "supports" to be processed.

This module is the most complete for collecting proposals since it allows users to include images, documents, videos, locations and categories. It offers a "control panel" of the proposal that allows them to follow how it evolves, alongside the resources and recommendations of a specific project.

Additionally, in each proposal, a "community of users" of the proposal is created to help improve its content, as well as to stimulate its dissemination to obtain more support.

Once the proposal is approved, users can track its development through progress bars and milestones.

2.1.2 Permissions and Tips

Permissions to participate in “Proposals”

Create proposals

Registered users

Support proposals

Verified users

CONSUL DEMOCRACY TIPS - citizen proposals

  • The default configuration lets proposals go to a vote when the necessary number of supports is reached. It can also be used to gain the required support, and for many other things (discussed in plenary session, studied, etc.).

  • You can configure the number of required supports adapting it to your needs. Generally, a high number (such as 5% of the census) is used if reaching that number has important consequences (how to bring the proposal to a vote). If the consequences are less dramatic (how should the proposal be studied by the technicians) a lower number of supports is usually requested.

  • Some institutions do not need something specific to happen when reaching a certain number of supports, but want to collect proposals through this module -since it is the most complete- so they modify the code to hide that specific functionality (See good practices)

2.1.3 How do I configure it?

The main configurations of the proposals module are made through the administration interface, in the following sections:

  • Proposal

  • Settings global settings Proposal topics

  • Proposal dashboard

Administration> Proposal

In this "Proposals" section, we see all the proposals created by users (which we should not confuse with the participatory budget projects that have their own section).

We see all the proposals listed, with their basic information and a search engine.

By clicking on the title of each proposal we can see more detailed information about it.

Next to each proposal, we see the "Select" button. Selected proposals will stop collecting support and will be displayed in the "Selected proposals" menu of the "Proposals" section that users see. It is the way to mark that a proposal has received sufficient support or has been selected for another reason.

At the bottom of this information page, we find the Milestones section. This section is used to publish the evolution of the proposals that have been selected. A timeline will be published on the public page of the proposal listing all the milestones.

By clicking on "Create a new milestone", the following information can be added: status (to categorize the proposals, for example: "studying the proposal, contracting, building the proposal, finished"; possible statuses can be defined in the link below), milestone description, milestone post date, images and documents to display in the milestone. The date, status and a description are the only required fields.

Administration >Proposal progress panel.

When creating a proposal, the author can access a progress panel that allows them to follow how it evolves, as well as to collect and make available resources and recommendations needed to make their proposal successful. The first section of the panel is called "Resources and actions" which lists all the available resources and recommendations. The second section is called "Requested resources" which is where notifications will appear when a user requests a resource.

- Resources and actions.

The actions are recommendations that are proposed to the user in order to make his/her proposal successful. Examples of these recommendations are: "Choose a suitable and eye-catching image for the proposal", "Explain the proposal in person to friends and family", "Prepare a social media outreach campaign", etc.

The resources are additional elements that are offered to users that can help the proposal be succesful. Some of these are default elements of the platform itself, like the possibility of carrying out surveys on the proposal or an email and poster format with a certain design to make your proposal visible), Some other resources may be provided by the administration of the platform (for example, resources for recording a short video about the proposal or announcing the proposal on social networks, etc.).

Both categories of resources can be configured to be offered only when the proposal reaches a certain number of supports. In this way, offering the resources can be customized to apply to a different number of users.

Other requirements can also be taken configured when activating the resources, such as whether the proposal is already published or still in draft mode, or that it has been published for a minimum number of days.

If we click on the "Create resource or action" button, it will show us a form where we can define the recommended resource or action.

In the case of resources, the form has a checkbox "Include a button in the resource to request the resource from the administrators". If this box is checked, the user will have to request the resource when it becomes available. Upon request, a notification will be activated in the following section "Resources requested".

- Resources requested.

When a user clicks on the "Request resource" button of one of the resources that include it, a notification will appear in this section. In this way, administrators will be able to manage the resource and contact the user. Subsequently, by clicking on the "Mark as resolved" button, the request will disappear from this list and will go to the "resolved resources" list.

Administration> Global Settings>Global Settings

Number of supports in which a Proposal ceases to be editable

After this number of supports, the author of a Proposal will no longer be able to edit it

Prefix for Proposal codes

This prefix will appear in Proposals before the creation date and the user ID

Number of supports needed to approve a Proposal

When a proposal reaches this number of supports, it will no longer be able to receive more and it is considered successful.

Administration> Global Settings>Proposal Progress Dashboard

As we have seen, most of the functions of the proposal progress panel are configured in their own section. From the global configuration tab you can define the description of different aspects like manager and evaluator user names, numbers of required votes, etc.


Redpública - Perú

UNDP Peru developed the “Redpública” project to build a citizen agenda through CONSUL's "Proposals” module. The module was modified to remove the need to receive a certain number of supports.

Decide Madrid- Madrid

The Madrid City Council uses the module to search for proposals that obtain the support of 1% of the enfranchised population (in Madrid: 28,564) on the web. The proposals that receive this support go to a citizen vote.

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