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The State, Civil Society and the Citizen

Exploring Relationships in the Field of Adult Education in Europe


Edited By Michal Bron Jr., Paula Guimarães and Rui Vieira de Castro

This book contributes to the setting out of a new, better informed and complex basis for discussions about the relationships between the State, the civil society and the citizen in distinct European countries and regions. It will be useful to researchers in the field of adult education, as well as social scientists interested in topics related to civil society, such as NGOs, social economists, and practitioners concerned with the trends that are forcing adult education to recontextualise its aims and practices.


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PART IV Citizenships in transition. Changes in roles, times and spaces


Chapter 10 Participatory citizenship. Reflections on the participatory budget and adult education Emilio Lucio-Villegas, António Fragoso and Ana García Florindo Introduction At the dawn of the 21st Century, one of the most important issues for adult edu- cation in the daily lives of people is the lack of democracy and participatory re- sources. In certain contexts, the shifting relationships between entities, such as the State and civil society, change the way that citizenship is lived. Usually, in Western societies, people can express their opinions on the most important or the most diverse themes. Generally, it is only in elections when people make use of their power and possibilities to take action concerning their dreams and reali- ties. The period between elections is a time for observing the performance of others, not for acting – and this does not allow for the empowerment of people. People do not have well-structured resources and opportunities to participate in issues that shape their daily lives between elections. Politicians decide the best place for a traffic signal or the best way to renew an old and popular square to transform it into a modern square. Social movements have tried to lay a bridge between the gap in their eve- ryday life and participation in political processes. In this work, it has been fun- damental to involve people in participatory processes that closely relate to eve- ryday problems, such as the environment, health, consumerism and so on. The participatory budget experiences that began in Porto...

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