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Participation and quality of life for all in Örebro


Detailed description of the Good Practice

Citizen participation and the ability to influence spatial planning are critical in planning good living environments in the municipalities of Örebro and Lekeberg. The context of Örebro Municipality’s pilot project “VINNA” (to WIN) within NEW BRIDGES project is about mutual planning of mobility, housing and services in certain areas that have common borders with other municipalities. One important aspect of the common Master Plan process is the attempt to find better ways to involve citizens who are often excluded from conventional participation processes. New ways of allowing people to express their opinions and reveal the changes required in their living environment are necessary to increase general wellbeing of the residents.

urban planning
quality of life
social equality
stakeholder involvement

Objectives of the Good Practice

to introduce new ways of allowing people to express their opinion and to involve

Participants of the Good Practice

Local and regional authorities of the municipalities Örebro and Lekeberg
Three schools and 80 children

Target group of the Good Practice

inhabitants of the municipalities Örebro and Lekeberg

Funding of the Good Practice

the European Union (European Regional Development Fund within the BSR Programme)
Local and regional authorities of the municipalities Örebro and Lekeberg

More Details of the Good Practice

Three schools and 80 children were given the chance to express opinions about their local neighbourhood.

The production of maps that are easy to understand (“children’s maps”) within the geographical information system GIS is one method which has been developed in order to support the participation of children and young people in urban planning, traffic planning etc. This method, which develops further the work carried out by the Swedish Agricultural University (SLU), is based upon the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. The method is computer-based and suitable for children from the age of 10 and has been used successfully within the VINNA pilot project.

This cooperation with the children in Örebro city-region began with an explanation of what urban planning means and the rights children have to express their own opinions. With the computer-based programme children’s’ expressed their feelings about the environment they were living. The children marked into digital maps their homes, their routes to school, the places and roads they used in their leisure time and their favourite places as well as those they perceived to be either dangerous or unpleasant.

The result shows that children favour different places and roads than adults. Children can also experience insecurity in places their parents may not even notice. There are also gender differences; girls favoured different places compared to the places favoured by boys. The participation process also discovered that it is easier for boys to find places planned and prepared exactly for their activities than it was for girls.

Besides the participation methods for children Örebro city-region has constantly tried to develop more effective ways to utilise individual perspectives in planning. The Master Plan process has developed new ways in which to engage citizens. It is important to ensure that these new and more inclusive approaches to planning can be sustained into the future and that they are widely adopted as an integral part of the planning process.

Documentation and documents

NEW BRIDGES project http://www.urbanrural.net

Available files

Contact details

Eva Järliden
e-mail: eva.jarliden@orebro.se

Mr. Lauri Hooli
Project coordinator
Mob. +358 40 764 0683

Ms. Maija Rusanen
Communication coordinator
Mob. +358 44 9075994

Data sources and references

Planning Together for Better Quality of Life - Guide for Integrated Management of Urban Rural Interaction
News Bridge 1/2011