The International Association of Public Participation (IAP2) is an organisation focused on promoting community participation and democratic processes.
The IAP2 Spectrum, which defines the public's role in any participation process, is at the core of their philosophy. District was proud to sponsor their recent conference in Melbourne, where a variety of topics were discussed. This Spectrum offers guidance to those looking to empower the community to help guide and inform decision-making on issues that affect them.
At District, we specialise in creating community engagement tools that prioritise collaboration and inclusivity. Our development process is based on a co-design approach that adheres to the IAP2 Spectrum, which emphasises the importance of involving stakeholders and community members in decision-making processes.
To ensure that our community engagement tools are effective and responsive to the needs of our customers, we employ a software development methodology that aligns with the five levels of the IAP2 Spectrum. This enables us to engage stakeholders and customers at varying levels of participation throughout the development process, ensuring that their feedback and input are incorporated into the final product.
By prioritising collaboration and inclusivity, we can create community engagement tools that are effective, user-friendly, and responsive to the needs of our customers and the communities they serve.
District's Software Development Methodology
|Inform||We begin with a discovery journey, which involves co-design workshops, whiteboard and ideation sessions to understand the project from every angle, while listening and learning from the client and their customers.|
|Consult||The client's technical requirements are mapped out together, and sprints and backlogs are determined to establish clear goals and objectives for the project.|
|Involve||Prototypes are developed and tested by the client and their customers, gathering feedback and insights to gain a better understanding of their needs and behaviours.|
|Collaborate||The co-design process fosters a continued collaboration between our team and the client, as the product evolves to meet the organisation's changing needs over time, with new features and versions being implemented.|
|Empower||Our software development methodology enables the client to develop in-house experts who have an in-depth understanding of the product and its potential to serve the organisation and its customers well into the future. This, in turn, fosters a culture of innovation and enables the client to achieve their long-term goals.|
Around the world, there is a growing movement to encourage greater public participation in democratic processes, and the work of IAP2 is leading the way in illustrating the benefits to society. When policies and projects are designed with input from a broad range of viewpoints, it ensures the result is tailored to the community that uses them.
It's a simple but powerful way to guarantee a successful outcome.
In Australia, the Victorian Parliament passed the Local Government Act 2020, mandating community engagement for all Victorian local government projects. Since then, governments have incorporated public consultation into their decision-making process.
Here at District we have developed community engagement software that streamlines the public consultation process. Our online tools include quick polls, surveys, and community forums, making it simple to get reports and analysis of community sentiment.
District Engage, our platform, has been used across Australia to power the community consultation process for governments and cities. It’s a platform that can be adapted to meet the unique demands of a broad range of organisations.
Empowering Collaboration, Innovation and Long-Term Success
Inform: When tailoring a community engagement project, we use a co-design process that takes our clients on a journey of discovery. We begin with co-design workshops, whiteboard and ideation sessions to gain an understanding of the project from every angle. By actively listening and learning from the client and their customers, we develop a deep understanding of their needs and requirements, laying the groundwork for a successful collaboration.
Consult: With our client's technical requirements in mind, we work together to map out sprints and backlogs, establishing clear goals and objectives for the project. Our collaborative approach helps us align our efforts to our client's business goals, ensuring that we deliver solutions that cater to their specific needs.
Involve: As we develop prototypes, we involve our clients and their customers in the testing process, gathering feedback and insights to gain a better understanding of their needs and behaviours. Through this collaborative approach, we ensure that the product we develop aligns with the user's requirements, resulting in a solution that is tailored to meet their specific needs.
Collaborate: At District, we understand that collaboration with our clients is key to unlocking innovative solutions that meet their specific needs. One such collaboration was with Digital Victoria on developing the Victorian Public Notices platform, an extension of the Engage Victoria platform.
This collaborative project involved replicating complicated whole-of-government permissions and team workflows to create a platform for publishing mandatory Public Notices. The resulting platform is remarkable, and a testament to the possibilities that emerge when two distinct organisations work together in a spirit of collaboration, trust, and innovation.
By leveraging our co-design approach and building a symbiotic relationship with our clients, we can unlock new opportunities for growth and success, enabling them to achieve their long-term goals.
Empower: Our software development methodology is designed to empower our clients to develop in-house experts who have an in-depth understanding of the product and its potential to serve the organisation. By adopting our co-design process, our clients can foster a culture of innovation, which enables them to achieve their long-term goals. The result is a product that is customised to the client's unique needs and designed to evolve as their business needs change over time.
Designing Future Products for Effective Community Engagement
Our Engage platform streamlines the community consultation process, making it easy to gather feedback and analyse community sentiment. With tools like quick polls, surveys, and community forums, our clients can engage with stakeholders at every level of participation to ensure a tailored solution. By also adopting our co-design process, our clients can further empower their stakeholders to take an active role in shaping the project outcome, leading to better decision-making and more successful outcomes.
At District, we strive to build a symbiotic relationship with our clients to unlock new opportunities for growth and success. If you're looking for a digital solution that evolves with you, talk to one of our consultants today and experience the benefits of co-designing and developing a solution that's guided by your unique requirements.