The government of Bogotá was honored by by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) for excellence in advancing innovative ideas in terms of citizen participation and digital citizenship.
Specifically, the Colombian capital was given the Eduardo Campos Award in the regional development bank’s “Citizen Participation and Trust Generation” category for its “Laboratory of Innovation for Social Organizations” initiative.
As described by IDB, “this laboratory is a space for communities to participate in the identification of problems in the city and in the collective construction of different alternatives to solve their demands effectively and sustainably.”
Many in the city have been less impressed with Bogotá’s leadership in recent years under Mayor Enrique Peñalosa, who has faced a campaign to remove him from office in a formal revocation process that has gained widespread support but not enough to trigger his removal.
Nevertheless, in this area, the Washington-based bank has seen standout progress from Bogotá.
“The objective of the laboratory is to innovate its participation process to include initiatives created by the most vulnerable communities, which will be accompanied by experts throughout the life cycle of the project, including implementation and sustainability, to ensure complete monitoring to support real citizen empowerment,” stated IDB.
Sáo Paulo, the region’s biggest city, was the other honorees in the citizen participation category in the fifth annual edition of this contest to promote better governance in Latin America. The Brazilian metropolis was recognized for promoting better transparency and collaboration in public education.
The colonial city of Puebla in Mexico and Córdoba in western Argentina were the two other recipients of innovation awards this year.
Puebla stood out for its Fab Labs initiative to help citizens learn use new technology, promote local entrepreneurship, and boost talent through training.
For its part, Córdoba has launched CiDi, a technological platform that aims to help citizens complete governmental procedures online and access digital services provided by the city government.