Decidim municipalities

Definition of the specifications for the deployment of the platform decidim for several municipalities

Period: December 2016 – November 2017

Source of funding: Diputació de Barcelona (the Provincial Government body of Barcelona)

Responsible for the project: Arnau Monterde, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya

Description: As the digital platform for participative democracy Decidim is crafted in open source and with free principles, it is continuously under development, improvement and re-use.

The main goal of this project is the development of the “multitenancy” functionality of the platform, to allow simultaneously the provision of the services to several municipalities within a unique instance, and therefore: (a) to cover many municipalities that otherwise could not develop and maintain their own installation; (b) to improve the extensibility, scalability and modularity of Decidim; (c) to foster an open collaborative ecosystem in which the functionalities that are developed by a municipality can be reused by other municipalities; (d) to promote municipal autonomy in a federated way with other municipalities so that all may contribute to the development and improvement of the platform.

To this end, we propose a conceptualization of the implementation and deployment of the platform based on the needs of each municipality and the different participation processes, as well as the coordination of the different agents involved, in order to define the technical specifications, the flows, the roles and the features, and to adapt them to the Decidim platform. The implementation of a unique participatory platform with multiple tenants also entails the planning and forecasting of collaborative environments between tenants that allow the cooperation between municipalities.

Accordingly, the architecture is being redesigned to accommodate several cases and to foster a scalable, sustainable and reusable development, while reducing maintenance costs and allowing the project’s growth in the mid- and long-term.