Matudo City

The Problem

Around 2003, Matsudo City Office was racking its brains for financial difficulties as well as many self-governing bodies in Japan. For the reason, reexamination of an enterprise, such as promoting privatization, was advanced. Simultaneously, Matsudo City Office introduced strategic management using techniques, such as "SWOT analysis" etc. which private enterprises are utilizing. As a result, aggravation of the financial condition of Matsudo was able to be stopped. However, many Matsudo personnel lost the volition which challenges a new thing. Around 2007, the policy (organizational reform) for the personnel to work with autonomy also in a severe financial situation became an important issue. Moreover, when Matsudo undertook an enterprise or it drew up a policy at the time, that citizens participate was increasing. However, manners in case citizens and the personnel of a governmental agency discuss etc. were decided by neither of Japan. For the reason, talks of citizens and the personnel of a governmental agency might be carried out to confrontation from beginning to end, and a conclusion might not be reached. It was also a subject to introduce the methodology and idea of talks utilizable at the place of such talks into Matsudo.

Solution and Key Benefits

 What is the initiative about? (the solution)
Apply for three years after 2008 in Matsudo. "the Matsudo comprehensive plan and the second-half master plan (gestation period: in the 2011 fiscal year~ the 2020 fiscal year) were to be formulated. It decided to begin the measure for solving the above-mentioned subjects in the timing of this decision. Therefore, the view of "positive approach (whole systems approach) was adopted, and it decided to advance formulation of a plan in Matsudo.
The decision process designed in order to build the place which can perform the dialog towards planning for as many citizens and personnel as possible participated that was named the "Imagine Matsudo"
With a positive approach, a focus is not carried out to the problem of people, or an organization and society, but a focus is made a strong point and value. Concerned people are going to collaborate in it drawing the future image demonstrated to the utmost with a common vision, and it is going to realize that it can tackle more actively.
Imagine Matsudo by such a positive approach which aimed at many people's participation as it could do, the other measures centering on the decision meeting in Matsudo City which have so far tackled, such as data analysis, such as needs investigation and a SWOT analysis were treated in parallel and also it advanced so that compatibility of the policy of Imagine Matsudo and Matsudo City might be planned.
The number of effects is three through this Imagine Matsudo.
One is that a total of 72 persons of 57 citizens and 15 personnel participated in the citizen meeting (production meeting of Matsudo future), and the proposal document of the meeting was directly connected with the Matsudo Comprehensive plan.
As the second effect, about 500 citizens participated in formulation of the plan.
Many citizens who participated could rerealize the public problem to be their problem.
As three effects, more than 1000 personnel participated in planning. It became a cause which improves the personnel's autonomy.

Actors and Stakeholders

 Who proposed the solution, who implemented it and who were the stakeholders?
The personnel of the "Matsudo adjustment-of-policy division" which is the section of the "Matsudo Comprehensive plan" in its duty proposed, and it made the cause moved to enforcement.
Also before this measure, Mr. Ohsumi Soshiro, the professor of the Kanto Gakuin University department of economics, was advising to the measure of an administrative and fiscal reform which Matsudo has taken.
As measures against the subject (the above-mentioned subject) which arose in the result of such a measure, Mr. Ohsumi proposed adoption of the positive approach to Matsudo.
And in the Matsudo adjustment-of-policy division, as a result of investigating the example etc. of the organizational change which adopts a positive approach, it became clear that there was no example in the local self-governing body in Japan.
Moreover, there were also few examples in the private enterprises in Japan, and it turned out by investigation that incorporated company Human Value Associate is supporting in most organizational change examples which utilize a positive approach.
Then, the positive approach was utilized, and it determined to formulate "the Matsudo Comprehensive plan and a second-half master plan", and decided to entrust the support about citizen participation or personnel participation to incorporated company Human Value Association. And both Matsudo and incorporated company Human Value Association examined, and it designed the decision process of a plan to utilize a positive approach.
In addition, Mr. Ohsumi, the professor of the Kanto Gakuin University department of economics will serve as the chairperson of "a production meeting of Matsudo future" which is an important point in a decision process.

(a) Strategies

 Describe how and when the initiative was implemented by answering these questions
 a.      What were the strategies used to implement the initiative? In no more than 500 words, provide a summary of the main objectives and strategies of the initiative, how they were established and by whom.
This creative measure (Imagine Matsudo) was designed by Matsudo and incorporated company Human Value Association based on "the Matsudo comprehensive plan and the second-half master plan decision basic policy", and Matsudo planned it.
The purpose of this measure is the following two.
If an environmental change is sharp and there is a problem in a complicated time as one of the purposes, even if it is a specialist, it does not necessarily have the optimal solution.
An important thing is enabling it to take out an adaptive solution by participation and the dialog of many persons concerned who surround a problem.
In the time which the needs in a public domain have diversified more, it is impossible to satisfy needs only by administration.
Then, want for civic and the other citizens [ participate ] who participated in formulation of the plan to be their problem conscious of a public problem.
It is the second purpose to build the relationship which administration and a citizen tackle together towards sufficiency of public needs.
This decision process consists of the following measures.
<Personnel participation >
・ The interview it is heard that your thought is (volume for personnel) : participant 1198 persons
・ The personnel -- dialog meeting [ of everybody ]: -- participant 137 persons
・ Examination team classified by policy theme : -- participant 22 persons

<Citizen participation>
・ The interview it is heard that your thought is (volume for citizens) : participant 294 persons
・ Civic Forum which considers the future of Matsudo : participant 128 persons
・ Production meeting of Matsudo future : participant 72 persons
・ Matsudo and the Children forum : participant 63 persons
・ Town meeting : participant 167 persons

(b) Implementation

 b.      What were the key development and implementation steps and the chronology? No more than 500 words
①Interview it is heard that your thought is (volume for personnel)
 A personnel interview was held in order to regard the personnel considering planning as its own thing in November, 2008. an interview is what the personnel perform in relay form based on a guide & sheet -- an application -- it carried out based on the methodology of appreciative inquiry (following, A.I. as abbreviation).
By this measure, the story of the highest individual experience, the merit of Matsudo and a strong point, and the ideal of future Matsudo was shared.

②The personnel -- dialog meeting [ of everybody ]:                                                                    Following the interview, the dialog meeting which the personnel meet together and discuss was held in January, 2009.
At the dialog meeting, the technique "open space technology" was utilized so that it could have the talks in which much personnel are open at all the members. There, in order to build the Future of Bright Matsudo, the theme in which the participant has a strong thought was raised, the high people of concern gathered for those themes over the wall of an organization, and it discussed autonomously.

③Examination team classified by policy theme (personnel working)
 July, 2009 in order to examine more deeply the important theme which was taken out from -- the personnel -- everybody's dialog meeting and which should be tackled from now on, the examination team according to policy theme which consists of the young personnel and the leading personnel in Matsudo City Office was installed.
The technique of the scenario planning was utilized, and it searched for the state of the desirable future, and drew as a scenario the process of realizing it.

④ The interview it is heard that your thought is (volume for citizens)
A citizen interview which utilized the A.I. technique was held as a measure of the beginning of citizen participation in February, 2009. In as a result of an interview, about the merit and the ease of living of Matsudo, and the future image of Matsudo, it collected into every [ of "policy deployment of a master plan ] direction ", and published to the plan.

⑤Production meeting of Matsudo future
The future forum to which people who participated about the past, the present, and the future of Matsudo perform an open dialog was held so that an understanding of the global image of Matsudo could be deepened in July, 2009. The future forum considered it as the program of two-day which utilized the technique of a future search, and it held it twice. Those who continue to "a production meeting of Matsudo future" which makes more concrete the contents discussed here as a committee, and participate in it were chosen from the participant in the future forum by the last on the 2nd.

⑥Production meeting of Matsudo future
In August, 2009, the production meeting of Matsudo future was installed, 2 times of whole meetings and 5 times of subcommittees (subcommittees are six subcommittees for every fundamental principles of a measure) were held, and the proposal document was submitted to the mayor of Matsudo in December, 2009. The process of talks of five meetings in the production meeting of Matsudo future designed "U process" to reference.

(c) Overcoming Obstacles

 c.      What were the main obstacles encountered? How were they overcome? No more than 500 words
In old citizen participation, it is a secretariat, and not only Matsudo but other self-governing bodies prepare a springboard for discussion, and think that they also decided common ground in many cases. In a positive approach, it is foundations to make an answer out of a participant, and leaving advance (facilitation) of a meeting, etc. to a participant's autonomy as much as possible is called for.
There was big uneasiness whether result sufficient by advancing in such approach could be obtained in an organization at the beginning which the measure started. However, at first, it is a place of personnel participation, a small result is accumulated, and sufficient result can be gradually obtained now also at the place of citizen participation by carrying out the work which harnesses learning by there in the next.
It is at the start time, and though big directivity is drawn, it is important for a measure object to begin from a small place, to repeat correction in accordance with a situation, and to raise into a big measure.

(d) Use of Resources

 d.      What resources were used for the initiative and what were its key benefits? In no more than 500 words, specify what were the financial, technical and human resources’ costs associated with this initiative. Describe how resources were mobilized
As financial resources, executed 7,495,373 yen in 2008, 12,867,569 yen was executed in 2009, ,9508,693yen in 2010, so 29,871,635 yen budget was implemented in total.
All the sources of revenue were general finances (municipal tax etc.).
It receives by entrusting incorporated company, Human Value Association and made it transfer to Matsudo gradually about technical resources. The financial resources for commissioning are contained in the above-mentioned amount of money. Moreover, in Mr. Ohsumi Soshiro, the professor of the Kanto Gakuin University department of economics, receiving overall advice of the way to advance.
About human resources, about 30 persons participated in members, such as a decision meeting, from the personnel of Matsudo every year, and about five persons were concerned with the member of a secretariat. Moreover, although Matsudo residents entrusted people which became a future structure meeting committee for counter value, the forum and the interview had Matsudo residents cooperate free.

Sustainability and Transferability

  Is the initiative sustainable and transferable?
Still now, in Matsudo, research towards establishment of the idea and methodology of the citizen participation by a dialog is continued. The principle theory of how the citizen who participated forms a dialog is examined. And the place of the talks using such a principle theory tends to be made, or it is going to train the facilitator which can promote such talks in citizens or the personnel.
However, it is in the situation whose place of the citizen participation which utilized the positive approach in Japan has not increased yet. It is hoped the local self-governing bodies etc. which utilize a positive approach will increase in number from now on.

Lessons Learned

 What are the impact of your initiative and the lessons learned?
The feature of the initiative is adopting the positive approaches on the formulating process. However, we also regard the following two points as the successful factor not only adapting the methods.
One of them is the high quality of the general design ability which made the best use of the typical method of positive approaches appropriately at each stage of the participation of the official staff and the participation of the citizens. About the individual measure of the positive approach, since it was structurized, it was comparatively easy to introduce.
It cared about especially which technique is taken in and assembled according to the maturity of an organization or citizen participation.
Another not only utilized the technique of the positive approach, but is having searched even in the idea and thought of the background. It kept on trusting the possibility of citizens or the personnel, such as making it entrust a participant's autonomy etc., so that the autonomy of the citizens and the personnel who participate might be valued and self-organization might break out. It cared about especially valuing a small change born to every personnel and citizen who participated.

Contact Information

Institution Name:   Matudo City
Institution Type:   Government Agency  
Contact Person:   Hiroyuki Shirai
Title:   Assistant section chief  
Telephone/ Fax:   047-366-7072/047-366-1204
Institution's / Project's Website:
Address:   387-5 Nemoto
Postal Code:   271-8588
City:   Matudo
State/Province:   Chiba
Country:   Japan

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