Haute-Garonne tomorrow: citizens’ aspirations guiding public action

Missions Publiques, Eclectic Experience, and the Institute for Desirable Futures have supported Haute-Garonne Council through an exciting process: envisioning life and Haute-Garonne in 2050.

Between June and August 2019, a series of creative citizen workshops were run in seven municipalities (Cazères, St-Gaudens, Toulouse, Cierp-Gaud, Grenada and Muret). Using their collective intelligence and letting their imaginations roam free, citizens, elected officials, civil servants, local stakeholders, citizens’ collectives, and associations took a journey forward to Haute-Garonne in 2050. They voiced their opinions on four key themes covering our collective aspirations and outside the usual sphere of public action: common goods, ecological transition, the inventions needed to shape our society together, and day-to-day life in the future Haute-Garonne.

What kind of society do we want? A society where people are up against one another, in an extremely competitive environment, or a participatory, democratic society where people – not dividends – are placed at the center of the project?

Georges Méric

President of the Departmental Council

In all, more than 400 people took part in these workshops to imagine a desirable future for Haute-Garonne. Among the visions put forward:

  • That of a society that has completely transformed the way that it consumes, produces and works;
  • That of an area where people live close to one another and where our work-home commute has become much shorter;
  • That of a society where caring for others and the environment is central to our activities.
  • That of a more peaceful way of life where we have gained time;
  • That of a society where protecting the common good is everyone’s concern.

These are just a few of the ingredients for a happy Haute-Garonne in 2050 and urge us to reconsider the direction we should take and how we should roll out territorial action.

These creative workshops also confirmed one essential point: participants want public decision-makers to draw on citizen intelligence to shape future public policies consistent with the aspirations of the people who know and experience their own area!

For a summary of the citizens’ ideas, see https://www.haute-garonne.fr/haute-garonne-demain