Invitation to participation practitioners in Scotland – book your place for Democratic Sector Day

Invitation to participate in Democratic Sector Day Scotland

10am-4.30pm, 5th March 2015

The South Hall at Pollock Halls

18 Holyrood Park Road, Edinburgh EH16 5AY, Scotland, UK



What Works Scotland is delighted to invite you to Democratic Sector Day –an encounter between people working in the public participation sector in Scotland.

Who can participate?

Anyone working in the Democratic Sector in Scotland. That is, organisations, networks and practitioners whose job is to foster and/or enable public participation in policy and decision making, and community engagement in public service design and delivery. This may include practitioners from the public, third and private sector.

What is the purpose of the event?

DSD is a day for participation practitioners to share ideas, projects and ambitions, and hopefully develop a better understanding of this ‘community of practice’ in Scotland. The objectives are:

  1. Improve our understanding of the Democratic Sector in Scotland: Who is doing what and how?
  2. Discover opportunities for collaboration regarding research and practice

What will happen at the event?

The event will be hands-on and interactive:

  • In the morning… there are structured table conversations to generate key themes for the rest of the day.
  • In the afternoon… participants decide what issues matter most to them and work in groups, before reporting back in a closing plenary session.

The design of the event borrows elements from formats such as Open Space, Unconference and Dialogue Circles in order to be as interactive and productive as possible.

Who funds the event?

What Works Scotland and Edinburgh University’s Academy of Government

Attendance is free, please book here:


About the organisation of the event: Simon Kersaw

About the contents of the event: Oliver Escobar

Partners collaborating in planning DSD

Angus Hardie (Scottish Community Alliance), Fiona Savage (FS Associates), Juliet Swann and Willie Sullivan (Electoral Reform Society Scotland), Tim Hughes and Sarah Allan (Involve), Alistair Stoddart (Democratic Society Scotland), Mark Langdon (CLD Standards Council), Susan Pettie (So Say Scotland), Fiona Garven (Scottish Community Development Centre), George Lamb (Disability History Scotland), Irene McAra-McWilliam (Glasgow School of Art), Ian Turner, Doreen Grove, Kathleen Glazik and Katy Betchley (Scottish Government), Bronagh Gallagher (West and Central Voluntary Sector Network + Art of Hosting), Sarah Drummond (Snook).

What Works Scotland is hosting this because…

WWS is a 3-year project with the remit of Using evidence to transform public services for all of Scotland’s communities to flourish. Our work is guided by the key principles from the Christie Commission, and a key area is public participation and community engagement. Within this broad area we are planning various collaborative research projects and Knowledge Exchange events. Democratic Sector Day falls within the latter. You can see more info about WWS here:

CITIZEN PARTICIPATION: How legitimate is it? Who is accountable?

Time: Thursday 19th May 2011, 5-6.30 pm, with drinks and nibbles after.

Venue: 6th Floor, Chrystal Macmillan Building, 15A George Square, School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh. Map:

The series organised by the Citizen Participation Group of the Public Policy Network continues. In this session we discuss issues around legitimacy and accountability in participatory processes. How legitimate is to involve citizens directly in shaping the policies of institutions and organisations? Who is accountable for such processes? To get the conversation started we have a mixed panel including a local policy maker, a practitioner, and an academic:

  • Councillor Barry Turner (East Lothian Council)
  • Nicola Cotter (Voices Scotland Lead for Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland)
  • Stephen Elstub (University of the West of Scotland)

REGISTRATION: Attendance is free but please sign up by email to Nicola Bryce at The venue is accessible. All welcome.