Wandsworth Air Quality Citizens Assembly

In 2019 we declared a Climate Emergency and we set the target of becoming the greenest borough in London.

Background

We are currently implementing specific actions designed to reduce pollution and harmful chemicals going into the air. We are committed to addressing the climate crisis and bringing residents along as key stakeholders and problem solvers.

Therefore, we are holding a Citizens' Assembly on Air Quality as part of our work tackling the climate emergency and improving health in the borough. The Assembly will produce a set of recommendations for us and other key partners on what action can be taken.  

The decision to hold a Citizens’ Assembly is in recognition of the importance of the opinion of local people.

About the citizens' assembly

The citizens' assembly is an example of a deliberative process (or mini public). Our citizens’ assembly will bring together a group of 50 randomly selected residents from across the borough. During the sessions, participants will hear from a range of 'witnesses' or 'commentators'. Participants will have an opportunity to question the commentators, share opinions with each other, deliberate and challenge each other and ultimately reach a set of recommendations on the action we and other local stakeholders can take to tackle air quality. The process will be led by a team of independent facilitators with extensive experience in citizens' jury/assembly facilitation from the social enterprise and community interest company Shared Future. It will take place over four Saturdays starting in late February 2023.  

An oversight panel was set up to ensure the process is unbiased and fair. It includes representatives from Wandsworth Council, public sector partners, community groups and academia. The role of the Oversight Panel is to ensure that the project design is fair and rigorous, monitor the process and push for implementation of the assembly's recommendations.

How participants will be recruited

A profile of participants will be agreed by the Oversight Panel that reflects local diversity. Participants will be randomly recruited in conjunction with The Sortition Foundation to match the agreed profile. Each participant will receive a £78 shopping voucher (reflecting London Living Wage) for each day they attend and if required support with any childcare or transport needs (or any other support needs as appropriate).

What we will do with the information gathered

Towards the end of the assembly, participants will reflect upon the previous sessions and write a series of recommendations.  All recommendations (in the participants' own words) will be presented in a report which will include an explanation of the recruitment process and the structure of the sessions. The recommendations will be prioritised with an opportunity for participants to record the reasons for their level of support for each recommendation. All recommendations will be published in the report with a ranking according to the prioritisation and a list of reasons given for their decision by assembly members.  

More information on the Wandsworth Citizens Assembly on Air Quality will be available soon.