The municipality’s residents and service users have the right to participate in and influence the activities of the municipality. The City Council must ensure that there are diverse and effective opportunities for participation.
Alongside representative democracy, citizens want more methods of direct influence
Representation is based on the voting rights of the municipalities’ residents in local elections every four years, when residents elect their representatives to municipal councils. Studies show that support for direct participation among municipality residents has grown: citizens would like to have more opportunities for direct democracy, such as referendums and different types of interaction, to support decision making. Current representative democracy alone does not sufficiently meet citizen’s demands (Helsingin Sanomat 268/2014).