Zero Project 2021/2022
Kota Kita is a non-profit organization based in the Indonesian city of Surakarta (Solo) that promotes citizen participation to make cities a better place for all. They use design-driven, participatory approaches to advocate for a shared-learning process between government and citizens. The Participatory Data Collection initiative is a city-wide mapping exercise aiming to reduce the gap in city’s disability data, improve evidence-based governance, and empower persons with disability in advocating for basic services in the process. From 2017 to 2019, the initiative was implemented in two Indonesian cities — Solo and Banjarmasin — capturing for the needs and aspirations of around 5,000 persons with disabilities living in the two cities.
Kota Kita offers a city-wide participatory data collection approach that aims to reduce the gap in city’s disability data, improve evidence-based governance, and empower persons with disability in advocating for basic services in the process.
First, they collect data about the disability-inclusive profile of a city using real-time, app-based technology with geo-tagging to understand how many residents with disabilities live in each city, where they live, and what needs they have. Once the data has been collected, Kota Kita gathers people with disabilities in the city to meet with city government officials, DPOs, civil society organizations, and academics in a forum to discuss the data and co-design various ways that their city can be made more disability friendly. In these workshops, they utilize creative methodologies that adapt to the abilities of each individual, involve first timers during the process, and encourage meaningful participation of each individuals.
This participatory and inclusive approach, combined with the app-based geotagging technology, creates spaces for persons with disabilities to voice their aspirations while providing reliable, fine-grained, and contextual data. The approach has proven successful in advancing evidence-based advocacy of public services for persons with disabilities and fostering closer links among persons with disabilities, government officials, disabled people’s organisations, and citizens at large.
The participatory approach has brought impact on three different levels:
Kota Kita documented around 5,000 persons with disabilities in Solo and Banjarmasin (2019), many of whom were previously unidentified by city government data, thus, allowing them to access social safety net programs and assistive technology, as well as becoming more empowered to participate in neighborhood activities.
They have provided a contextual mapping on the population and the specific needs of persons with disabilities at a neighborhood level across 52 neighborhood in Banjarmasin, which has led to the construction of a safe and inclusive school zone for 800 students.
Their findings documented 2x the amount of persons with disabilities living in Banjarmasin compared to existing government data in 2019, which later supported the Banjarmasin Department of Social Affairs to ensure well-target relief aid delivery to people with disabilities in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
We aim to replicate our participatory approach for disability-inclusive city initiative in 3–5 cities located within the Asian, African, or Latin America regions over the next 5 years.
By replicating our participatory approach, we believe that we could empower more persons with disabilities in data representation and catalyze collaborations between the city government, disabled people’s organisations, civil society organisations, academic institutions, and the private sector to work on a joint disability-inclusive agenda in respective cities.
We are looking for implementing partners from non-governmental organisations (NGOs), civil society organisations (CSOs), disabled people organisations (DPOs), or community-based organisations (CBOs) who have:
- Working experience and shared vision to promote disability-inclusive cities
- Experience and knowledge of the city context
- Connected with marginalised groups or DPOs
- Have access to funding and resources
So far we have implemented the initiative in two Indonesian cities: Solo and Banjarmasin. We also have experience in implementing our participatory methodology in a city-wide mapping project in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
We are planning to replicate this process through peer-learning and transfer of know-how on participatory data collection; facilitating evidence-based advocacy and data matchmaking; and providing ongoing support for implementing partners in respective cities.
Through the initiative, our implementing partners will benefit from:
- A set of toolkit of inclusive and participatory methodologies
- Tools to develop a rich disability-inclusive city profile
- Consultation on creating digestible data visualization
- Support to contextualize the tools to each city’s needs
The average cost of implementation ranges from $40,000 for small cities (50,000 – 200,000 in population) to $70,000 for mid-sized cities (200,000 – 500,000 in population). These are estimated figures that cover necessary overhead and implementation cost; however, each city will have different needs. In this case, we are open to discussing with interested partners to tailor the project according to what is needed in your city.