Crowdsourcing the Public Participation Process for Planning Projects
Article: Crowdsourcing the Public Participation Process for Planning Projects. by Daren C. Brabham. (University of Utah, USA). Planning Theory 2009; 8; 242
"Public involvement is a central concern for urban planners, but the challenge for planners is how best to implement such programs, given many difficulties inherent in the typical public involvement process. The medium of the Web enables us to harness collective intellect among a population in ways face-to-face planning meetings cannot. This article argues that the crowdsourcing model, a successful,Web-based, distributed problem solving and production model for business, is an appropriate model for enabling the citizen participation process in public planning projects. This article begins with an exploration of the challenges of public participation in urban planning projects, particularly in the harnessing of creative solutions. An explanation of the theories of collective intelligence and crowd wisdom follows, arguing for the medium of the Web as an appropriate technology for harnessing far-flung genius. An exploration of crowdsourcing in a hypothetical neighborhood planning example, along with a consideration of the challenges of implementing crowdsourcing, concludes the article."