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Sociológica (México)

On-line version ISSN 2007-8358Print version ISSN 0187-0173


OCHOA TINOCO, Cuauhtémoc; MENDEZ BAHENA, Benjamín  and  MALDONADO GARNICA, José. Participatory Budget and Citizens’ Empowerment in Mexico City. Sociológica (Méx.) [online]. 2023, vol.38, n.107, pp.41-78.  Epub Oct 27, 2023. ISSN 2007-8358.

Nine participatory budget (Spanish acronym PP) polling processes in Mexico City’s 1,800 territorial units ended with works and services mostly induced by the authorities, with scant participation by the public, without building identity or social fabric, and with limited appropriation of the participatory mechanism. This article’s general objective is to analyze the relationship between participation and citizen empowerment in participatory budgets, considering limiting factors and obstacles, and those that promote and strengthen these two processes. Based on a detailed study of five relevant experiences, using document analysis, newspaper coverage, interviews, and ethnography to characterize the cases, the authors identified the conditions and factors that produced the resulting projects; at the same time, they explored the spaces and formal processes that restrict citizen participation and inhibit empowerment. Illustrating strengths and weaknesses enhanced our knowledge of the difficulties faced in Mexico City before the 2019 reform and may help advance the debate to improve participatory budgets’ implementation in the years ahead.

Keywords : citizen participation; citizen empowerment; participatory budget; Mexico City.

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