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Co-creation for Policy. Participatory methodologies to structure multi-stakeholder policymaking processes

This publication is a Science for Policy report by the EIT Climate-KIC and the Joint Research Centre (JRC) and has been prepared in the context of the technical collaboration agreement between these organisations. The scientific output expressed does not imply a policy position of the European Commission. Neither the European Commission nor any person acting on behalf of the Commission is responsible for any use that might be made of this publication. The designations employed and the presentation of material on the maps do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the European Union concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.

The COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, digital transformation, demographic changes and other global challenges are urging us to take profound yet agile policy action at all levels. The scale and complexity of the action needed make it essential that we perform this work while engaging with all relevant stakeholders. In this context, we see an increasing need to learn about how to organise policy co-creation processes and events in a purposeful and structured way.

This handbook aims at helping its users to effectively co-create the powerful policies we need today. It combines an entrepreneurial way of thinking and a concrete process for developing breakthrough ideas that stand a high chance of producing real-world impact. It presents a practitioner-oriented narrative for the design and implementation of innovative participatory processes and workshops to address societal challenges – coordinated by policymakers and with the active engagement of key stakeholders. It applies tried and tested self-organisation and design-thinking principles for co-creation.

The handbook provides practical steps and recommendations for the identification of synergies among stakeholders across territories, sectors and levels. It shows how to ensure optimal knowledge management and efficient communication to optimise resource usage, policy convergence and the achievement of positive results when designing or implementing policy. By combining community engagement and knowledge management services, the handbook highlights how participatory processes can be embedded in the policymaking cycle with a view to improving the societal value of generating collaborative innovation, goodwill and co-created evidence for informing policymaking.

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