Participatory Democracy Forum: What future for Montréal?

While representative democracy seems to be in crisis, direct democracy at the local and regional level is currently fast-growing. A variety of new mechanisms allow citizens to participate in political decisions regarding the future of their cities. Whether we are talking about public consultations, co-design, online participation or participatory budgeting, the tools are various and becoming increasingly popular in many cities around the world. One of the biggest challenges is to ensure that these participatory procedures truly contribute in strengthening the citizen’s power over decision-making. What is the state of the art of participatory democracy in Montreal? How are other cities strengthening local democracy? What innovations can be done to improve citizen power in shaping their cities? The forum will seek to portray current challenges of public participation while exploring opportunities to strengthen local democracy.

Two days of conferences, panels and collective discussions will explore the various challenges facing public participation in our cities. Based on theoretical and practical basis, the forum will gather community groups, citizens, academics, professionals and state officials from Montreal and beyond to discuss opportunities of democratizing the city.


Venue: Faculty of planning, University of Montreal

Amphithéatre 1120


Friday 21 sept.  


6:00 – 7:00 PM

Welcome and Exhibition

“The Faces of Citizen Participation in Montreal”, City of Montreal

Presentation and projects, Office of Public Consultation of Montreal

Presentation and projects, Coalition des Tables de Quartier

Interactive map of spaces of public participation in Montreal, IPAM


7:00 – 9:00 PM

Welcome note

Dimitri Roussopoulos/ President, IPAM

Laurence Lavigne Lalonde/ Responsible for transparency, democracy, governance and citizenship, City of Montreal


Conference: Citizen Power and Municipalism


Borja Prieto / Directorate-General of Citizen Participation Madrid City Council

Thomas Angotti / Director of Hunter College for Community Planning and Development, New-York


Saturday 22 sept.


10:00 – 11:30 AM

Panel 1: The Montreal model of Participation


Dominique Ollivier / President, Office of public consultation of Montreal (OCPM)

Johanne Savard/  Ombudsman of the City of Montreal

Pierre Hamel/ Professor, sociology, University of Montreal

Yves Bellavance/  Coordinator, Coalition des tables de quartier

Amanda Flety/ Coordinator, Committee on Social Inclusion, Participatory Democracy and Human Rights, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), Barcelona


Moderator: Donald Cuccioletta / Historian, author and lecturer at University of Quebec in Montreal


1:00 – 2:30 PM

Panel 2: Participatory Planning Tools


Gabrielle Immarigeon/ Convercité

Christophe Abrassart/  Researcher at Lab Ville Prospective, in charge of the project Créer penser l’urbain

Sarah Legouy/  Citizen participation service, City of Paris

Véronique Fournier/ Urban ecology centre Montreal

Maxime Sauvetre/ Cap-collectif, Paris

Jurgen Hoogendoorn/ Policy advisor, City of Amsterdam


Moderator: Louise Roy/ IPAM,  Previous president of Office of public consultation of Montreal


Panel 3: Citizen Initiatives


Karine Triollet/ Action gardien

Claudette Demers Godley/ Communauté Saint-Urbain

Bertrand Fousse/ Solon-collectif

Dilan Erkisi/ Tempelhofer Feld, Berlin (to be confirmed)


Moderator: Jonathan Durand Folco/ IPAM


4:40 – 5:30 PM

Closing Discussion with the public: What future for Montreal?

Anne Kettenbeil/ IPAM

Marie-Odile Trépanier/ IPAM

Laurence Lavigne Lalonde/ City of Montreal


Moderator: Dimitri Roussopoulos/ IPAM