5 steps to stakeholder engagement and co-creation
Government organisations in the Netherlands have gotten better at asking input from neighbourhoods for municipal projects. We now organise multiple meetings, preferably on different days of the week and in different time slots, to make sure most people are able to join at least one of the meetings. But there are still numerous reasons people can’t or won’t come to these meetings, e.g. holidays, not being able to leave the house, or simply not seeing the usefulness or necessity of it. To get a real overview of opinions of the entire neighbourhood, you should not only invite them to a meeting, but also visit them at their homes. In door-to-door conversations, you can have genuine conversations with residents and give them your full attention. By coming over to their turf, it gives people the feeling of actually being listened to, as well as helping to gain their trust, which can in turn lead to a better understanding of their input and finding a suitable solution or measure for it.