Engaging with policymakers and practitioners
Although MGD began with a grassroots approach, the policy, planning and real-estate contexts are critical to delivering on community ambitions. Community recommendations and proposals by the greening forum were presented by the MGD team to 13 key policymakers and practitioners. These interviewees represented a range of perspectives: Dublin City Council (Parks and Biodiversity); Dublin City Council(Planning); Dublin City Council (South Central Area); Waterways Ireland; The Digital Hub; New Children’s Hospital; Mental Health Ireland; Irish Wildlife Trust; community development workers; and youth workers.
The goal was to identify actionable pathways to greening and change. The full set of policy/practitioner responses to the community recommendations can be accessed here but a summary of the key issues raised by the interviewees and that require consideration is provided below.
How ideas might be realised or pathways to action created will depend on:
- Enhancing communication between civil society and those charged with maintenance
- Fostering constructive collaboration between communities, landholders, and between government departments
- Supporting community and social infrastructure through urban greening programmes
- Developing ecological literacy within and between communities and organisations
- Effective political support and leadership
- Accessing resources such as horticulturists and relevant training
- Embracing multi-functionality as an ecological design principle for new development
- Streamlining and articulating a landscape-led planning approach
These are discussed in more detail in section 4 of the Community Greening Strategy and in the EPA scientific report (section 4.3.3).