In the past 12 years I supported the development of a few digital platforms. I am not a coder, but I support user interaction optimization, and the overall design of processes. The following are the 3 main projects I supported, but I was also involved in a variety of others.
I started collaborating with Mark Klein (the developer of the Deliberatorium software) in 2011. We conducted two large scale Randomized Controlled Trials in 2012 (N=600) and in 2017 (N=1500) testing different design configurations, and constrasting the deliberatorium to Pol.is. In 2017 during the wedialogue project (see the archived website) we released the first FLOSS installation guide for the deliberatorium relying on OSX server (link here). In 2023 we improved such installation and delivered a first FLOSS installation for UNIX servers (link here). In the process we also introduced design and quality of life improvments supported by the Scholio project (funded by the Templeton Foundation) and the Rebooting Democracy project (funded by UKRI).
Between 2015 and 2017 I supported the design and testing of the EMPATIA platform for multichannel democratic innovations, and in particular participatory budgeting. The idea of the platform was based on my theoretical work with Giovanni Allegretti on integrating different processes. The platform was used in around 30 pilots, including small cities such as Lisbon, Milan and Wuppertal, and smaller applications. A version of the platform was used in the National PB in Portugal and we still use the platform in the EMPAVILLE game. The website of the EMPATIA platform is still partially active: https://empatia-project.eu/ but not all pages are working.
The team of the EMPATIA project developed a very succesful roleplaying game to test the platform and to teach civil servants what PB was and its challenges. The game was deployed more than 100 times during the lifetime of the project, then it was picked up by the startup of one of the member of the project (BiPart) and commercialised. In 2022 I reactivated the work around the FLOSS version of the game with a new spinoff called EMPAVILLE GREEN leveraging the PHOENIX H2020 project and a small grant from Southampton University that finally allowed me to hire actual experts of game design. The new version of the game is in its final testing phase and we hope to release it by June 2024.