CONSUL - online democratic platform

01 February 2019 - Published by Renske Stumpel
24th of January, 8 students from the Hanze University of Applied Science presented their designs, features and ideas for the digital platform CONSUL. This digital engagement tool, developed in the city of Madrid, has been implemented by 100 institutions in 33 different countries and used by 90 million citizens. CONSUL can be used by a (local) government to digitally engage with its citizens and in that way aim for a more transparent digital democracy. But is this tool also appealing to younger citizens in the city of Groningen? The 8 students conducted research on this topic and developed CONSUL for this specific target group.


CONSUL is an open source platform through which (local) governments can engage more easily with their citizens. The platform offers various features by which the tool can be used for various stages in the policy making process. Examples are debating, voting, participatory budgeting, collaborative legislation, and proposals. Citizens, civil servants and politicians can engage with each other through which the democratic process can become more transparent and easier to follow.

The municipality of Groningen has great experience with (online) citizens engagement. However, connecting with younger people has been a difficult task for a local government. The students from the Hanze University of Applied Science therefore generated a strategy how to develop, design and promote CONSUL in such a way to target younger people and students in the city of Groningen. This does not only include an appealing design with many pictures and videos, but also interesting policy topics and suitable features. And above all, a quick loading and responding platform which is compatible for mobile use.

The strategy which the students developed will be incorporated in the municipality’s approach to implement CONSUL to a broad public. The strategy involves communication plans, but also design requirements to also attract the younger citizens of Groningen to the online digital platform. CONSUL is expected to be online in Spring 2019. To keep up with the developments of CONSUL, check this website!undefined