Designing e-Participation with Balkan journalists
This paper describes the use of scenarios as a central part of the design methodology, in a project to create an eParticipation initiative, working with the national news agencies in 3 Western Balkans countries. The stakeholders in the project came from a variety of backgrounds, with different skills, experiences of technology and ideas about participatory democracy. For design purposes, the most important stakeholders involved are journalists from the Balkan news agencies, as these will be major users of the tool, creating content and managing e-participation processes. Scenarios were used to put these journalists at the centre of the design and specification process. This method also provided the diverse stakeholders with a focus for discussion and shared understanding. The use of scenarios influenced the design of all aspects of the e-participation initiative, including the format of the online tools, the rules and methods for managing online discussions and the offline path of influence with those in power.