The Council of Europe’s new Guidelines for civil participation in political decision-making were adopted by the body’s Committee of Ministers on 27 September 2017. The guidelines – which are based on practices and standards in Council of Europe member states, international standards and input received during public consultations – outline key principles for promoting dialogue, consultation and co-operation between civil society and the authorities. They contain recommendations focusing on four core types of public participation: the provision of timely information, the organization of consultations, the encouragement of dialogue and active public involvement. The ultimate aim of the guidelines is to strengthen trust in and credibility of democratic institutions and to complement representative and direct democracy by broadening participation by individuals, NGOs and civil society at large. More information is available here.