Participatory budgeting voting in the Volgograd region
More than 80,000 people voted for initiative budgeting projects.
Initiative budgeting is part of a global trend. It is a set of practices for solving local issues based on civil initiatives. Residents of the Volgograd region, in the south of Russia, chose which projects would receive money from the municipal budget.

Dmitry Zavyalov
Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Volgograd region
"Our goal was to gather the opinions of as many people as possible. That's why we organized online voting on the Polys platform, which is based on blockchain technology and guarantees complete anonymity. We're very pleased that the citizens were so active in the program to support local initiatives – more than 80 thousand people voted. That exceeded all our expectations."
PROBLEM
Low voter turnout
The main problem was the difficulty of conveying the idea of participatory budgeting to a large number of people. The authorities had previously held general meetings in the administration buildings of cities and towns, but no more than 200 people at a time participated in them. Online voting would make it possible to increase the number of people involved in the decision-making process, raise awareness of participatory budgeting and help choose the most suitable projects.
SOLUTION
Online voting in 45 districts of the region
Voting took place on a special site and lasted 14 days around the clock. Voters logged in to the system using a phone number. To access the vote, citizens had to enter a code on from SMS, after which they could cast their votes. Each voter could cast one vote for a project in each district of the Volgograd region (a total of 45), not just for the district where they lived.
RESULT
Voting across the region in record time
82,500 people took part in the voting. A total of 112,600 votes were counted. This result exceeded all expectations of the administration of the Volgograd region. In the past, conducting a meeting for 200 people required approximately one day of work; doing so for 82,500 voters would have taken more than a year.