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Abstract - Citizen Participation Through 'Interdisciplinary Experimentation'

The report introduces two different environmental projects involving citizen participation and interdisciplinary research: Reclaiming Waste – a living experiment in Ry (2014–2015) and Permeable Green City Aarhus – Combining Life Politics, Biodiversity, Citizen Empowerment, and Sustainable Urban Drainage to Create an Ecologically and Socially Resilient City (2014–2016). They take the shape of ‘living experiments’ that explore various processes and phases in democratic participation. Through these projects the report argues in favour of understanding participation as ‘interdisciplinary experimentation’, which is defined as an experimental practice, creating specific and designed encounters between various groups and forms of knowledge, in order to investigate how to solve or reframe particular challenges.

The report furthermore outlines eight crucial dimensions to consider in future engagements with citizen participation designed across academic disciplines: experimentation, expertise, interdisciplinarity, assemblage, relevance, aesthetization, disagreement and multiple values.