The annual Innovation in Politics Awards is an exciting initiative to recognise exceptional actions by politicians in any Council of Europe country that improve our societies, and strengthen our European values of human rights, social balance and democracy. The Irish Launch aims to create awareness that anyone in Ireland can nominate innovative projects by Irish politicians for an award. Anyone 16 years and upwards can sign-up to be one of the 1,000 citizens on the European Jury that will decide who is the most innovative. The winners will be announced at a ceremony in Vienna on 17 November 2018.
Established in 2017, the goal of the Innovation in Politics Awards is to improve the work of politicians by highlighting and exchanging best practice so as to achieve better outcomes for people and a stronger Europe.
Mr Ronny Zuckermann, Co-founder of the Innovation in Politics Awards said: “Citizens have been losing trust in politics for some time now. The Innovation in Politics Awards aims to rebuild confidence in our democratic processes. We know that politicians face financial restraints and often complex national policy frameworks, which limit what they can do. This is where courage and vision are needed - we want to recognise politicians across the political spectrum and at any level of governance – local, regional, national level - that break new ground, achieve results, and do it with the active involvement of a range of actors.”
The participation of citizens is a core feature of the Innovation in Politics Awards. Mr Zuckermann said: “we were delighted with the reaction the Innovation in Politics Awards received in 2017 their first year. 589 projects were nominated. 1022 jurors selected 80 finalists and the ultimate winners in 8 categories. We look forward to even greater engagement in 2018. We are encouraging people from Ireland and all over Europe to nominate a project or participate in the Jury.”
Professor Gary Murphy, Head of the School of Law and Government, Dublin City University said:
“Public engagement is a cornerstone of Dublin City University's identity and being a partner of The Innovation in Politics Awards reflects our commitment to supporting civic and political leadership both in Ireland and internationally. The Awards is an opportunity for exceptional work by Irish politicians to be showcased, and for Irish politicians to be part of a long-term network that can inspire others in Ireland and across Europe to be courageous and inclusive in how they shape and deliver solutions that benefit and strengthen Irish and European society. Any person or group including civil society organisations at local or national level can nominate work that they believe has made a difference and should be recognised.”
Professor Murphy added: “We want to encourage people in Ireland who are interested in the political process to apply to members of the European jury - no jury member will score projects and politicians from their own country, so being a juror is also a chance to learn first-hand what’s happening in other places in Europe and to take inspiration from that back to their own communities.”
Ms Solenn Pleurmeau, speaking at the launch on behalf of the Parliament & Citizens Association, a Finalist in the Innovation in Politics Awards 2017 said:
“Since 2013, the Parliament & Citizens Association has been enabling citizens to write the law in full transparency with parliamentarians through a digital platform. This platform enabled Senator Joël Labbé to introduce for the first time in France a co-elaborated law with citizens: this consultation received more than a thousand contributions and 5000 votes from 500 participants. At the end of the process, 45 citizen proposals were kept in the final law. This platform has been endorsed at the highest level, most notably by the French Government and the former Minister for Digital Affairs, Axelle Lemaire, who used it to co-draft the Digital Republic Bill with citizens. Parliament & Citizens is convinced that democracy will find a new dynamic only if politicians have the courage to rely upon collective intelligence to make better decisions. And it is important that these public decision-makers can be recognized for their innovative way of doing politics, as the Innovation in Politics Awards allows.”
Anyone in Ireland or any of the 47 Council of Europe countries can nominate a politician or group of politicians at local, regional, national or European level for a project which they believe has made a real difference. Nominated politicians will be invited to make a formal submission to the Innovation in Politics Awards.
The Innovation in Politics Awards will be presented in eight categories - civilisation, human rights, democracy, community, prosperity, jobs, ecology and quality of life. The projects must be innovative and meet at least one of the following additional criteria: participation; building trust; and sustainability. Out of all the submissions received, a Jury of 1000 European Citizens will select a shortlist of 10 projects in each of the 8 categories.
Mr Zuckermann concluded: We have a fact-based approach to trumping those who seek to destabilize democracy. The Innovation in Politics Awards support courageous and creative politicians in Europe that engage in a meaningful with citizens and civil society and so build a greater understanding of and confidence in political processes. We will make sure that successful and effective solutions to societal issues are seen by a wider public and across borders, so they may serve as inspiration for others.”
- Full information is on The Innovation in Politics Awards is available at www.innovationinpolitics.eu
- Innovative projects can be nominated online via the website until 15 July 2018
- People can sign-up to be jurors online via the website until 31 July 2018
- Questions or queries can be answered by contacting Fidelma Joyce, Irish Representative for the Awards at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
- Follow the Innovation in Politics Awards process @politicsawards