About the project

In democratic processes, groups of people are often not reached. As a result, democratic participation often fails to meet expectations for diversity of opinion. The core problem is the lack of a target-group-specific approach to civic participation. The "Reach more. With participation." project is developing solutions. The project is funded by the Robert Bosch Foundation and implemented by More in Common and the Open Society Initiative.
Based on an impulse paper, evidence-based new forms of citizen participation will be developed and tested in five selected German municipalities. This approach is intended to enable exploratory action research. The municipalities have been selected with a view to regional distribution and different sizes. The municipalities deal with different issues, which are the subject of the participation work. The selected communities reflect this deliberately broad coverage of the target criteria: Bramsche (Lower Saxony), Dortmund (North Rhine-Westphalia), Görlitz (Saxony), Marzahn-Hellersdorf (Berlin), Pasewalk (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania).

Focusing on the municipal level, the project formulates recommendations and suggestions on how to make participation more inclusive, based on practical experience. The aim is to reach people who are not usually involved in participation processes. Based on the results, the project will develop sustainable proposals to improve the practice of participation formats. The inclusion of different groups from society as a whole contributes to diversity.


Project phases

  • In the first phase, a problem and needs analysis of barriers to participation was conducted. From this, an impulse paper was developed that addresses the problems of broader citizen participation. Based on the More in Common research data from 2019-2022, theses for promoting inclusive participation were formulated and practice-oriented guiding questions for municipalities were developed.  
  • In the second phase, the developed ideas will be directly tested in five selected municipalities. The project will document and analyze the experiences from spring to fall 2023.
  • In the third phase, the key findings and recommendations for action will be presented at a final conference in Berlin and made available to the public.

Overall, the project is designed to be sustainable, as the findings will be integrated into the projects of the project partners in the long term and will also be made accessible through didactic processing.  Through the program, more knowledge about successful participation methods will be gained together.


Falco Hüsson
More in Common Deutschland
e-mail to Falco Hüsson
Charlotte Niedenhoff
Kommunen der Offenen Gesellschaft
Phone+49 176 34411604
e-mail to Charlotte Niedenhoff

Contact at the foundation

Sylvia Hirsch
Senior Project Manager
Phone+49 711 46084-823
e-mail to Sylvia Hirsch