Engaging the public in decision-making processes

Engaging the public in decision-making processes is commonly accepted as an effective strategy for a better policy making, a better policy support and for narrowing the gap between government and the public. In today’s digitised society, participation via online media is becoming more important. But is this so-called e-partici- pation being used optimally? Or is a better design possible? In my opinion, the answer to these questions is a ‘yes’. Despite numerous efforts in engaging the public with policy deliberation, the actual amount of participants remains low. In this article, I have used the YUTPA model (Nevejan 2009) to analyse some existing e-participation projects. Additionally, I derived ten characteristics of ‘play’ to make proposals for a more designerly e-participation approach.