Civic engagement in Portugal
: are citizens willing to participate in public consultations?

  • Francisco Ribeiro Simões de Oliveira (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


Public consultations are gaining strength along the globe with more governments encouraging it and institutions like OECD proclaiming that public consultations may bring different benefits to the society such as the improvement and increase in transparency in policy-making and a stronger supervision to regulatory authorities. Nevertheless, many regulators feel a public apathy and a low participation rate when conduct these consultation processes. This thesis will focus on the citizens’ intentions to participate in public consultations and tries to understand the factors behind their intentions that may lead to participation or reduce citizens will to participate such as the need for specific knowledge and image perceived of regulators. According with the research conducted through 2 surveys, one to Portuguese citizens and another to 14 European regulators of the water services sector, there are a considerable number of citizens saying they are willing to participate, that are already more involved in civic activities but many are not even familiarized with the concept of public consultation since there seems to be a lack of communication with regulators struggling to communicate the process. In this thesis it is also explored the best phase of the decision-making process to conduct public consultations and the usage of online and offline methods to conduct a public consultation and communicate with citizens.
Date of Award2015
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorRute Xavier (Supervisor)


  • Mestrado em Gestão

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