This article aims to contribute to the debate on citizen participation by illustrating, with an operational example, how it may be more effectively achieved using a combination of survey and online social data. We focus on a project the purpose of which was to arrive at a formulation of planning policies based on a sharing process between the council and citizens of the small municipality of Peccioli in Tuscany, Italy. The aim was to increase participation by collecting opinions on long-term projects. The combination of survey and online social data enabled the collection of more accurate insights on participation, providing the municipality with a reliable representation of citizens’ sentiments and opinions. This article, although locally rooted, demonstrates how planning authorities more widely can enhance participation by taking advantage of both analog and digital methods.
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