Yayasan Kota Kita (Our City Foundation) is an Indonesian civil society organisation of governance practitioners who focus on urban planning and citizen participation in the design and development of cities. Following several years of experience with participatory budgeting in Solo city, in 2016 they carried out research to examine participatory budgeting processes in six Indonesian cities.
This practice paper describes Kota Kita and its work in more detail, and reflects on the history and evolution of participatory budgeting in Indonesia. In doing so, it contextualises some of the findings of the research, and discusses their implications. It discusses: the risks and opportunities of institutionalising participation; how access to information and use of new technologies has an impact on participation in budget planning processes; what it takes for participatory budgeting to be an empowering process for citizens; and how participatory budgeting can include hard-to-reach citizens.