Participatory Budgeting in Taiwan: Investigating Participatory Budgeting in Disability Employment Promotion in Sanxia
臺灣從2014 年底起掀起參與式預算的熱潮，本研究以三峽區的身心障礙者就業促進方案試辦計畫為例，檢視臺灣實踐經驗，並討論審議民主及參與式預算的精神如何透過細部流程的規劃得以落實。本研究也說明此試辦計畫所帶來包括賦權於民、蒐集創新點子、在地培力與審議人才培植、促成多元行動者的合作、創造更加包容的社會氛圍、提升民眾對政府的信任感，以及產生先驅示範的效果並帶來後續擾動效應等正面效益。以Wampler 所指出的四個核心原則予以檢核，此試辦計畫在發聲、投票、社會正義等面向可謂高度達成，然在改善透明度則為中度達成。最後，本研究也從更廣泛的角度指出參與式預算若欲在臺灣普遍推行、甚至制度化所需克服之課題，包括嶄新模式的推廣經常遭遇質疑、部分的既有政治與意見領袖等容易認為自身權力被此一預算分配機制所剝奪，進而阻礙參與式預算的推行、欠缺對其核心精神的理解與支持，則容易將參與式預算做為替預想政策「擦脂抹粉」的工具、參與式預算涉及實際預算之框留與編列的複雜議題、民眾普遍對公部門所推動的相關計畫抱持不信任的態度，也導致對相關活動的參與意願低落，以及目前臺灣仍處於推廣參與式預算的初步階段，切忌便宜行事、流於表面的施作。
From late 2014, we can observe a “participatory budgeting (PB) boom” in Taiwan. Nevertheless, no systematic examination and evaluation of PB practices in Taiwan exists. Hence, this article investigates an experimental PB project on disability employment promotion in Sanxia to examine PB’s practical experience in Taiwan. This article details the handling procedure of this experimental PB project and delves into how the spirit of deliberative democracy and participatory budgeting can be fulfilled through arrangement of detailed processes. Moreover, we argue that this PB project brought several positive results, such as empowering citizens, gathering innovative ideas, cultivating locals and deliberative personnel, facilitating cooperation among heterogeneous actors, producing a more inclusive social atmosphere, increasing citizen’s trust in government(s), and acting as a pioneering exemplary project for the launch of even more PB projects. In addition, examining this PB project with Wampler’s (2012) four core principles, this project is highly qualified in terms of the “voice,” “vote,” and “social justice” aspects, while it barely passed in terms of the “improved transparency” principle. Last, we point out several issues that must be conquered before participatory budgeting can be generally promoted and institutionalized in Taiwan: First, the promotion of new participatory modes is often doubted; second, some political and opinion leaders deem PB to be a mechanism that can deprive them of their power and resources and, therefore, they oppose its promotion in Taiwan; third, when delving into the promotion of PB but without a correct understanding of its core ideas and spirit, then it is easily turned into merely a tool to legitimatize the pre-planned policies; fourth, PB inevitably involves issues of budgeting preservation and distribution, which is highly complicated; fifth, lay people generally regard what public sectors promote as untrustworthy, resulting in their low participation in public affairs; and sixth, Taiwan is in an initial stage of promoting PB, so we should pay attention to all the principles and details to avoid conduct that cuts corners and is superficial.
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