Citizen Engagement: A Game Changer For Development?

Government works best when citizens are engaged in policymaking and public service delivery. Beginning March 15 the World Bank Group’s Open Learning Campus (OLC) is offering a free Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)— Citizen Engagement A Game Changer for Development?— through the edX platform. In this five-week course, experts from across the globe critically analyze how citizen engagement can be leveraged most effectively to achieve development results. Registration can be found here.

Exploring citizen engagement and the role citizens can play in actively shaping public policy and service delivery, the course provides research and theories related to citizen engagement, and examples of ways citizens and governments are working together in new ways to improve their societies. Learners will hear from local practitioners implementing different citizen engagement approaches in various sectors including water, health, and education in Ghana and Kenya.

Partnering with leading institutions – the London School of Economics, Overseas Development Institute, Participedia and CIVICUS – to develop each week’s content, the MOOC aims to provide the best knowledge and cutting edge research on the subject. With over 25,000 global learners having joined previous offerings, this third offering of the popular course will continue to build a genuine community of practice. The course is designed for a broad audience from practitioners to academics to members of the public interested in learning more about implementing citizen engagement in their communities.

Citizen engagement is about empowering people to take control of their own lives, to continue to find solutions to these challenges, and to provide feedback on the quality of services received. It is about giving voice to people so that they are not left out of the development process.

In an increasingly interconnected world citizen engagement is critical for improving development outcomes. Around the world we have seen that when citizens are engaged, when they participate, they can improve policymaking and service delivery.

Simply put if we want to solve many of the social, economic and environmental challenges we face around the world, we need to take into account the knowledge, experiences, views and values of the people most directly facing these challenges.

We hope you will join us on March 15 to learn how you can improve development results across the globe and in your own communities.