The Four Core Values of Participatory Decision-making

The Four Core Values of Participatory Decision-making
Mutual Understanding
In order for a group of stakeholders to reach a sustainable agreement, the members need to
understand and accept the reasoning behind one another’s needs and goals. A basic sense of
acceptance and understanding allows people to develop innovative ideas that incorporate
everyone’s point of view.
Full Participation
During participatory processes, all stakeholders are encouraged to be actively involved, and
so say what’s on their minds. This strengthens people in several ways. Stakeholders become
more courageous in raising difficult issues. They learn how to share their needs and opinions.
And, in the process, they learn to discover and acknowledge the diversity of opinions and
backgrounds of all stakeholders involved
Inclusive Solutions
Inclusive solutions are wise solutions. They are made by integrating everybody’s perspectives
and needs. These solutions have the advantage of reflecting the true picture, and the
perspectives of not only the powerful and influential, but also of the truth held by the
marginalized and the weak.
Shared Responsibility
During participatory processes, stakeholders feel a strong sense of responsibility for creating
and developing sustainable agreements. They recognize that they must be willing and able to
implement the proposals they develop, so they make every effort to give and receive input
before final decisions are made. This contrasts sharply with the conventional assumption that
everyone will be held accountable for the consequences of decisions made by a few key
These core values are only generated when stakeholders take an active part in the decision
making process!