The EuroPetition project piloted the implementation of a trans-European Local Authority service providing distributed citizen engagement and interaction with the European Parliament’s PETI Petitions Committee and the European Citizens' Initiative. The EuroPetition project is sponsored by the European Commission under EU eParticipation preparatory action.
The open-source e-petitioner system was developed by
Public-i from ITC's original system. The system
supports coordination and submission of cross-border and pan-European
EuroPetitions to local government and the European Parliament's Petition
Committee. Five European regions were involved: Andalusia (Spain), Italy,
Netherlands, Sweden and the UK and with a reach of around 6 million citizens
across the EU. It showed how to strengthen and broaden citizens' participation
in democratic decision-making and contribute to better legislation through
applying the latest available innovative ICT.
Edinburgh Napier designed and implemented the project
evaluation. (More about the evaluation). The evaluation concluded that the EuroPetition project had met
and often exceeded its objectives. It demonstrated that it is possible to
promote the concept of e-petitions to widen and further understand citizen
participation in contexts such as Spain where the petitioning concept is new.
It has also demonstrated the proof of concept of a pan-European multilingual
e-petitioning eParticipation service which can help citizens forge connections
with the European Parliament, reducing the democratic deficit across the EU.
EuroPetition can help the European Parliament Petitions
Committee to reduce their workload by preventing the submission of invalid
petitions and taking advantage of local government to support the petitioning
process. At the same time the process can support subsidiarity, increase
transparency and citizen engagement. However, this can only happen if the
Petitions Committee (ie the MEPs and the Secretariat) takes ownership of the
process (and ensures provision of local support), and recognises the gains that
it can make by proactively engaging with the petitioners at the beginning of
the petition cycle to ensure that concerned citizens the petitions that it does
have to formally respond to are within scope and clearly worded. The Scottish and
German Parliaments have shown that this can be done without restricting the
citizen’s ultimate right to
engagement with defining data standards for e-petitions and the process of
defining the ECI presents an opportunity for the EuroPetition service,
as it could be adapted to support the ECI process with relatively minor
Edelmann, N., Cruickshank, P. (2012). Introducing Psychological Factors into E-Participation Research. In: Manoharan, A., Holzer, M. (Eds.) E-Governance and Civic Engagement: Factors and Determinants of E-Democracy, , () ( ed.). (pp. 338-361). Hershey, PA.: . IGI Global Publishing.
Cruickshank, P., Edelmann, N., Smith, C. (2010). Signing a an e-petition as a transition from lurking to participation. In: Chappellet, J., Glassey, O., Janssen, M., Macintosh, A., Scholl, J., Tambouris, E., Wimmer, M. (Eds.) Electronic Government and Electronic Participation, , () (2010 ed.). (pp. 275-282). Linz, Austria: . Trauner.
Cruickshank, P., Smith, C. (2009). Self-efficacy as a factor in the evaluation of e-petitions. In: Parycek, A. (Ed.) Proceedings of EDEM 2009 - Conference on Electronic Democracy, , () ( ed.). (pp. 223-232). Vienna: . Austrian Computer Society.See all publications