Make a film for the big city plan.

Dominc Campbel phot of Big City Plan poster Birmingham

I’ve just received an e-mail from Richard Rees at the city council encouraging me to mention the digital challenge which the council is throwing out for anyone who wants to contribute more to the big city plan process. Thanks for prompting me to do this, I meant to write something when the competition launched last month.

The council want you to use video or still photography to express your opinions about the plan.  You can win a flip camera. It’s a great idea and I would encourage you to use any combination of video, still and or audio to show what you want changing in the city centre.  How about a two minute world wind tour of your neighbourhood?

Sadly I can’t enter because the rules appear to prohibit people who are professional image makers from doing so.

If you want to take photos or make a short film then the closing date is April 20th and the rules are here.  If you want to read the big city plan (work in progress)  as the council expresses it please go here, if you would also like to look at a plainer English version please go here.

Some of you may know I took part in creating a plain English translation of the plan for the bigcitytalk site. It was mentioned as an example of the future of consultation (link to mentions of Birmingham) in the Cabinet Office sponsored Power of Information Report:

The original Power of Information report was one of the first to be re-worked and presented on CommentOnThis as an experiment.  CommentOnThis was an early innovator in reworking government consultation documents online so that they can be used more easily.   More recently a team of civic bloggers in Birmingham has translated and re-purposed Birmingham’s ‘Big City Plan’ on the web in Big City Plan Talk.

These technical developments could improve the effectiveness of policy development in consultation, but will require new skills amongst policy makers and communicators.  A plan for supporting the change needed in policy development skills should be developed by Government Skills by end 2009, with a concomitant training plan from the National School for Government.

The big city talk site saw a conversation emerge involving 274 comments.  Not sure how those comments have accounted for in the consultation report itself. The council tells us:

All attributable comments submitted to date have now been processed on our consultation database and are visible to all. As of 4 March, a total of 1,864 comments from a total of 273 contributors have been logged as follows:

Directly into the consultation portal:  719

Via e-mail:  679

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Other 57

I’m imagining big city talk would best be covered by other? What do you think?