Citizen Engagement Handbook
The purpose of this document is to provide guidance to ministries, Government Communication and Public Engagement staff, and B.C. public servants that are interested in planning a citizen engagement initiative.
Since 2012, there has been growing interest from B.C. government ministries in engaging the public on a variety of topics. In total there were 242 opportunities for the public to give input between June 2012 and July 2017. Here is a breakdown of those topics by sector:
(B.C. Government Engagement opportunities since 2012, numbers are as of July 2017.) The Public has provided input to government on 242 topics: 14 Business & Commerce; 9 Education & Training; 40 Environmental Protection; 11 Families & Residents; 22 Government; 13 Health & Safety; 13 Land & Animals; 66 Natural Resources; 23 Recreation & Parks; and 31 Transportation.
During this time the B.C. government received more than 480,783 contributions through a variety of input methods including 51,139 blog comments, 72,396 feedback forms/surveys and 48,296 emails and letters.
(Numbers as of July 2017) How are Citizens Engaging? 79,190 Telephone Townhall Participants; 72,396 Surveys and Feedback Forms; 145,054 Online Ratings; 63,592 Face-to-face Participants at Townhalls or Community Meetings; 4,828 Stakeholder Submissions; 4,057 Phone Surveys; 51,139 Blog Comments; 48,296 Emails and Letters; 480,783 Total Citizen Contributions.
This document references many internal-to-government processes, but may also be useful to other governments and citizen engagement practitioners. A complimentary document to the Citizen Engagement Handbook is the B.C. government’s Service Design Playbook which focuses on improving service delivery to British Columbians.
For those reading this for the first time it is important to note that the Citizen Engagement Team will do a lot of the heavy lifting and help to guide ministries through the process, however, the ministry’s subject matter expertise and their Government Communication and Public Engagement Communications Shop are vital to the overall process. A citizen engagement initiative is a three-way collaborative partnership.