Helsinki Loves Developers

Welcome to the refurbished Helsinki Developers' Portal! The site is developed and operated by the City's Open Software Development team

You can find information about our projects and APIs. All the code we develop is fully open source, and our UIs are built on top of the same APIs that are available for everyone to use.

Any questions or comments? Want to share your love? Feel free to join us for a chat in our Gitter chat room.


Plants and benches in Kontula – visualising participatory budgeting

Participatory budgeting is a form of direct democracy where citizens actually have a say in how part of the city budget is allocated. The total public budget cannot easily be allocated based on local preferences only - any budgeting decision usually needs considerable amounts of data and analysis to actually uphold the commitments the city has made to the communities and services that depend on it. However, on the lower level of budgeting - allocating funds between several competing projects or funds earmarked for a specific purpose - there is a strong case to be made that decisionmakers actually do not possess the data needed to make most of the money they have at their disposal.

The same, of course, theoretically holds on the level of the budget as a whole, but the larger the budgetary changes and sums involved, the more data we will need and the slower the process of redirecting the funds will be. Therefore, if we want public budgeting to become more cost-effective and fact-based, we will benefit from a bottom-up approach, in which aggregating local data over long periods of time will slowly allow even larger decisions to be based on enough data to be effective.