arrow_back Back to blog

Hoplr makes it easy for citizens to rely on each other and on the social capital of the local community. For example, they use Hoplr to share information, to socialise, to organise activities, to find help with chores, and to exchange items.

Hoplr shifts the focus from the individual to the local community. Social cohesion, offline meetings and local engagement are the basic requirements for achieving meaningful inclusion and citizen participation.

From individualism: individuals and groups based on common interests such as jogging, street, committee, acquaintances,...
To local community: social cohesion, diversity and circular economy, babysit, chores,...
To offline inclusion and participation: Outbound: including elderly, needy, people who are not known within the community,... Inbound: engagement of new neighbours, foreign speakers, motivated citizens,...

Move from reaching citizens to involving citizens. From communication to citizen participation. With Hoplr in your municipality, you strengthen engagement and involvement on a neighbourhood level. A stronger local community leads to more inclusion and a higher citizen participation rate.

Citizen participation options

  1. Citizen initiatives
  2. Neighbourhood poll
  3. Participation project or trajectory
  4. Public survey
  5. Verified survey
  6. Participatory citizen budget
  7. Public participation website
  8. Knowledge centre and guidance

1. Citizen initiatives

Hoplr makes it easy for members of the local community to share an idea or initiative with the neighbourhood. Neighbours then vote for or against the proposal and engage in conversation.

With the Service Dashboard, you can allow citizens to share these ideas or initiatives with the local government. This way, you can track votes and conversation around the shared idea and respond when necessary.

Citizens in Sint-Niklaas propose to turn Lindestraat into a bicycle street. 27 people vote in favor, 6 against.
Citizens in Sint-Niklaas propose turning Lindestraat into a bicycle street. 27 people vote in favor, 6 against.

2. Neighbourhood poll

As a user of the Service Dashboard, you can post a poll in one, multiple or all of your municipality’s neighbourhoods, whenever you want. These are the possible question types:

  • for or against
  • multiple choice
  • ratings from 1 to 10

Neighbours cannot only vote, they can also discuss and clarify their opinions. This question type is perfect for experimenting with citizen participation in a casual way. It allows you to collect information quickly and informally.

Sint-Katelijne-Waver asks the neighborhood what they think of the new location for the polling stations
Sint-Katelijne-Waver asks the neighborhood what they think of the new location for the polling stations

3. Participation project or trajectory

A participation project lets you bring the citizens along in a process of several days or weeks. Within a predetermined period, you post several ideas or questions into the Hoplr neighbourhoods. Again, you can choose the most appropriate question type: for or against, multiple choice questions, ratings and open questions.

A participation project is a structured series of questions, with a common goal. For example: bullet points from a multiannual plan, feedback on the policy paper, support for local initiatives,…

Read the article about the ‘SKW Zaait’ participation project.

Because these questions or statements are presented to an engaged community (the Hoplr neighbourhoods), you allow for cross-fertilisation and dialogue. This way, you cannot only count votes, but pick up sentiment and nuances as well.

4 . Public survey

Our public survey offers the opportunity to question citizens in depth. Dialogue and interference are not possible. The survey consists of a series of questions, which are to be filled in all at once.

These are the question types:

  • multiple-choice questions with one option
  • multiple choice questions with multiple options
  • ratings from 1 to 10
  • open questions
  • ranking
hoplr survey municipality sint-niklaas
Municipality Sint-Niklaas surveys its citizens about a project area situated in a specific neighbourhood

5. Verified survey

A verified survey is very similar to a public survey but is not accessible to people who don’t have a code. Citizens must enter an ID number in order to participate. This way, you can verify respondents. Read this case study about a verified survey.

referendum with a rating question and a multiple choice question
Referendum with a rating question (I feel adequately informed by my local government.) and a multiple choice question (Through which canals would you like to be informed?).

6. Participatory citizen budget

More and more local governments free up a sum every year, in order to support local initiatives and projects.

Citizens can submit ideas or initiatives through Hoplr. These initiatives are then budgeted and converted into citizen projects.

This is followed by a voting round, in which every citizen can split the available citizen budget between citizen projects of their choosing. The most popular projects will be funded, until the citizen budget runs out.

7. Public participation website

Participation projects, surveys, referendums and citizen budgets can be shared on a public website. This way, any participation can communicated to citizens who are not registered Hoplr users.

8. Knowledge center and guidance

We offer guidance and advice with all our participation solutions. A team of experts in the field help with the design, implementation and analysis of each participation project. Read more, here.

Start with citizen participation

If you want to get started with citizen participation through Hoplr (just like Boechout, Sint-Katelijne-Waver, Geraardsbergen, Sint-Niklaas, Hove or Veurne did), we would be happy to help you on your way. Let our team of experts guide you with the design, implementation and analysis of your Hoplr participation project.

Sign up for the Hoplr newsletter and stay informed of the latest articles.

Receive a monthly e-mail with information, news and developments on inclusive citizen participation and stay up to date on Hoplr products, services and offers. Read our privacy and cookie policy for more information.