Bürgerwerkstatt in Dresden am 25. März 2019

Bürgerwerkstatt in Dresden am 25. März 2019


Prof. Dr. Günther Schneider: Very vivid discussions! Well, I must say I am enthused. There were four groups with very engaged fellow citizens, both young ones and seniors. They asked questions concerning practically everything in civic life. Participants were very open-minded. There was criticism, but in a constructive manner. Well, I am really enthused. In my opinion, the main theme tonight was how to maintain and strengthen our social fabric. How to show everyone respect, how to have a civic dialogue. Communication is important, and especially listening to people with different issues and opinions. Dirk Hilbert: The main takeaway form me is that Dresden’s citizens are highly engaged, not just in the fields they devote their volunteer efforts to, but for the city in general. Education was of course a main theme, housing too, and social interaction in our city. Female citizens: Well, one theme was how could volunteers and city staff improve their cooperation. Another one was how volunteers could more easily access city funds for their organizations, without a lot of red tape. Two themes which are quite independent of each other. Unfortunately, our discussions were not very much in-depth, as there was such a broad range of topics. People raised everything from old-age poverty via children suffering from a heart condition to refugees. That makes it a bit difficult to discuss every detail of a topic. However, this workshop was a first, and we have a couple of good ideas how one could improve upon this design at the next Citizens’ Workshop. Citizen: Being confronted with so many different positions and opinions was quite an interesting experience. And of course meeting so many engaged fellow citizens was exciting. There was a room full of people, and everyone had a topic of their own on the mind. We should have had more time to have in-depth discussions, and we need more such meetings, to flesh out our ideas in detail. So many topics where raised in those four hours. All we could do was touch on them, then move to the next topic. Of course there should be follow-up events. However, the organizers should perhaps devote each event to a single topic, so there is more focus.

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