General information about the Participatory Budget in Warsaw

Submission of projects

Initially, we define the principles of a given edition, including the timetable, the amount available to residents and its division into district and general city budgets. The first stage of the process is the submission of projects, which usually lasts about two months. Any resident of Warsaw can submit a project for the Participatory Budget – you do not have to be of legal age or registered in Warsaw.

A project can be submitted in two manners: online or on a paper form delivered to the City of Warsaw. Projects can be submitted on a district or city-wide level. In the application, you must enter your details (name, surname, home address and contact), as well as the title of the project, a description, the proposed location or an estimate of the cost of realising the project. The project can be submitted individually or with a maximum of two other people.

Each project must be accompanied by a list of residents supporting the project. For a district project you need 20 signatures from the residents of the district. If submitting a city-wide project, you need 40 signatures of support from the residents of Warsaw.

Formal and content-related project assessment

Thereafter, each submitted project is evaluated by the City of Warsaw. The Office’s personnel will first verify that the project has been submitted correctly from a formal point of view - that it was submitted on time, filled out correctly and contains all the necessary appendices.

If deficiencies or errors need to be corrected, City of Warsaw’s personnel contact the project author. They ask to complete the form and incorporate the necessary corrections. If the project author does not use this opportunity, the project is evaluated negatively and is not further considered.

The next stage is technical assessment of the submitted projects. During the substantive assessment, it is verified whether the submitted idea can be implemented in the proposed form. The project is reviewed in accordance with the criteria specified in the documents describing the course and principles of the Participatory Budget in Warsaw. We verify, among others, whether the activities described in the project correspond to the scope of the City’s tasks, comply with legal regulations and are generally available, the cost of the project has been correctly estimated and is within the specified limit, and whether the implementation of the submitted project is possible in the indicated location and during one financial year.

During the verification process it may be discovered that the project is not feasible in the proposed form. However, if it is possible to modify it, we contact the author of the project and present the scope of the proposed changes. If the alterations are not possible or the author does not accept them, the project is evaluated negatively.

Appeals against a negative evaluation result

Authors are entitled to appeal against a negative evaluation result. If the author appeals, his/her project is re-evaluated. Objections to the previous assessment are analysed. We examine whether everything proceeded correctly. The results of the re-evaluation are final.

Voting

Successful projects are submitted to a vote of the residents. Votes can be cast online or on paper ballots. Each resident may vote in one selected district on 15 district projects and on a maximum of 10 citywide projects. All Warsaw residents can participate in the vote, you do not have to be registered or of legal age. However, in order to verify that a given individual has not voted more than once, we require the PESEL number, which is unique for each citizen.

Selection of the winning projects and their implementation

Once the vote is over, the results are counted. The projects that receive the most votes and are compatible with the amount allocated for the Participatory Budget in a given district or at the city-wide level will be implemented. The successful projects are entered in the City budget for the following year and then their implementation begins. The performance of projects selected by residents in the voting is the responsibility of the City of Warsaw employees, who conduct all the necessary actions connected with the preparation of documentation, the selection of a contractor and the execution of the task. They usually contact project authors to inquire about and agree on various details, but this is not obligatory.

The 8th edition of the Participatory Budget in Warsaw has been completed. So far we have implemented more than 3500 ideas of residents and we are still carrying out new ones.

For more information about Warsaw’s Participatory Budget, please send an e-mail to bo@um.warszawa.pl.

Frequently Asked Questions

With the Participatory Budget, the residents decide where a portion of Warsaw’s budget should be spent. Every year it is the citizens of Warsaw who develop and submit projects, and then vote to select those that will be implemented. Thus, they decide together what will be created in their immediate surroundings, in several districts or in the whole of Warsaw.

We have already completed eight editions of the Participatory Budget in Warsaw.

Financial resources for the implementation of residents’ ideas come from the City budget. Therefore, it is not additional money, but a part of the City’s funds to be distributed directly by the citizens of Warsaw.

Every resident of the City of Warsaw is entitled to participate in the Participatory Budget – you do not have to be registered, you do not have to be of legal age. If you live in Warsaw and you want to submit a project for the Participatory Budget, you can do so because you do not have to provide your PESEL number in the application form. Unfortunately, the PESEL number is necessary in order to vote. We require your PESEL number because we use it to verify that you have not voted more than once.

In order for a project to be submitted to a vote of the residents, it must pass the assessment conducted by the City of Warsaw. Each submitted project is first verified from a formal point of view, e.g. whether it has been submitted by the deadline, it contains all necessary information and has the appropriate list of signatures. The next stage is the substantive assessment. We monitor, among other things, whether the idea is feasible, legal and whether its cost is within the financial limit. The submitted projects are allowed to be modified so that they meet the verification criteria and can be put to a vote by the residents.

The projects that will win (and therefore will be implemented) are those that receive the most votes and meet the amount for the Participatory Budget. It might happen that a few highly expensive projects win or over a dozen cheaper, smaller ones are selected. Furthermore, at least 50 individuals must vote for an idea at the district level and at least 100 at the city level to qualify for selection.

Projects selected by residents are entered into the City budget and carried out by the City of Warsaw. Their implementation takes place in accordance with generally applicable legal regulations (e.g. the Public Procurement Law, the Public Finance Act). Contractors are selected by tender, within a request for proposals or a competition for NGOs.

Information on all projects selected for implementation can be found in the “Implementation” tab.