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


Commentary by IPAM on the draft regulation on public participation in urban planning and development

In December 2017, the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Land Occupancy sought comments on the draft regulation on public participation in planning and development. Here is the Commentary of our board of directors, submitted to the ministry December 30, 2017.


Click here to download the Commentary.

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IPAM brief on Bill 122

February 14, 2017
IPAM presented a brief (link below in French) to the public hearings of the Committee on Planning and the Public Domain on Bill 122 – An Act mainly to recognize that municipalities are local governments and to increase their autonomy and powers.

Key points : sustainable development; the abolition of referendums; strengthen participative governance; requalification zones and policies on information and consultation; and how to improve referenda procedures.


Click here to download the Brief.

(Translate this document for IPAM)

Montréal-Métropole: Please share your ideas!

Thank you to everyone who attended our public forum held on November 30 at the Canadian Center for Architecture, as well as our January 30 roundtable at Rayside-Labossière. These two major events underscored the need for public debates as such, considering the potential impact of Bills 121 and 122. In addition, the strong social engagement in these discussions demonstrates the importance of these topics to the public and, consequently, the attention and consideration that provincial and municipal governments should give to it.

We ask you to share some of your ideas and/or concerns, since IPAM is committed to compiling a brief that could eventually be presented to the parliamentary committees on urban planning of the City of Montreal.

Feel free to send us your comments by email at or on our Facebook page:

Minutes of the Round Table of February 3, 2015: Municipal taxation – New tools for municipal Financing

At the invitation of the Institute for Policy Alternatives of Montreal (IPAM), some thirty Montreal stakeholders met on February 3, 2015 to discuss tax issues, municipal and alternative modes of financing for Quebec municipalities in general, and for the city in particular.

In the form of open discussion, the exchanges allowed participants from different backgrounds to compare their perception of the problem and their ideas. The discussion focused on the advantages and disadvantages of property taxes and alternative financing, the special case of Montreal and the means to achieve the city you want in the long term. In the coming months, the status of Montreal will be reviewed by the Quebec government to give it more powers and diversify its sources of revenue. The report will lead to the production of an IPAM thesis on the subject to guide the organization in its participation in future discussions.

Here is the report of the round table: Table-ronde_3février2015_compte-rendu1

Click here to download the minutes.

And here is a detailed outline of a brief from IPAM on the adoption of a special status for Montreal in April 2015: Mémoire-IPAM-Fiscalité-municipale.canevas.27fév

Click here to download the brief.

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Round Table of February 3, 2015 :: Municipal Taxation: new tools for municipal funding

Proud of the success of its previous round tables, the Institute for Policy Alternatives of Montreal (IPAM) invites you to save the date of its next round table, which will be about municipal taxation, the various financing tools available to your cities and their impacts on urban planning. This meeting will be held in the offices of Rayside Labossière, 1215 Ontario St. East (Montreal); Tuesday, February 3, 2015, from 4:45 pm to 7:00 pm in an informal “5 à 7” context.


Click here to download the invitation.


Click here to download this report.


Click here to download the presentation.

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IPAM Report on the Management and Development Plan

Last September, the council of the agglomeration of the City of Montreal presented its draft of the Management and Development Plan (SAD). Considering the importance of this document for the future of Montreal, on the 22nd September IPAM organised a round table for reflecting, with its partners, on the draft of the Plan and the elements that must be changed or added in order to respond to the present and future issues of the Montreal agglomeration. The discussion, the minutes of which can be found in the Annex, was rich in debate and allowed the identification of priorities for the IPAM community. This report is inspired by such reflections from the round table as well as from discussions that were had afterwards within IPAM.


Click here to download the report.

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Minutes of the IPAM Round Table of September 22, 2014 on the Montreal Urban Agglomeration Land Use and Development Plan (SAD)

At the invitation of the Institute for Policy Alternatives Montreal (IPAM), thirty Montreal participants gathered on Sept. 22, 2014, in order to discuss the draft of the Montréal Urban Agglomeration Land Use and Development Plan (SAD), the adoption of which is expected in late December 2014.

In the form of open discussion, the exchange allowed participants from diverse backgrounds to compare their perception of the situation and their ideas. The discussion focused on what to prioritize, monitoring mechanisms and the means to realize that which is envisioned in the document. The role of SAD and its relationship with the PMAD and the urban planning that Montreal and related cities will have subsequently produced were also explored. It is expected that the discussions which took place at the round table will feed everyone’s reflections as part of the public consultations planned in the Fall.

Read (in French) the  minutes of the IPAM Round Table of 22 September 2014


Click here to download the minutes.

(Translate this document for IPAM)

Round Table on the surplus hospital sites of Montréal

On February 13th, the second round table of the Montreal Institute for Alternative Policy (IPAM) was held on the surplus hospital sites in Montreal. This meeting brought together 45 participants from politics, academic and civil society was rich in ideas and proposals.

We are pleased to send you today the presentation document and the summary of the exchanges that took place during the event:


Click here to download the presentation.


Click here to download the minutes.

(Translate these documents for IPAM)

Blanche-Lemco-Van-Ginkel Prize : Two Nominations at IPAM

The Ordre des urbanistes du Québec announced the names of the 30 laureates of the Blanche-Lemco-Van-Ginkel Prize during its 50th anniversary gala which took place at the Palais des congrès de Montréal, last 23rd or October.

The Blanche-Lemco-Van-Ginkel Prize is awarded to non-urban planners of from all walks of society (citizens, elected officials, managers, promoters, professionnals, etc.) for their significant contribution to the growth of urban planning in Québec since 1963. The OUQ thus underscores that the improvement of our communities and the planning of our living environments concerns every citizen.

The OUQ also wanted to posthumously grant this title to Pauline Gauvin and Andrier Sainier for their contributions to urban planning.

IPAM is proud that two of its members, Dimitrios Roussopoulos and Ron Rayside, have also been nominated.

We invite you to consult the full list of laureates by following this link.