​Literature and online resources

A selection of literature and online resources regarding civic engagement.


Demokratia.fi (Democracy) is a site that provides a range of key online services for use by engaged citizens: Kansalaisaloite.fi (Citizen’s Initiative), Kuntalaisaloite.fi (Municipal Initiative), Lausuntopalvelu.fi (Statements & Opinions), OtaKantaa.fi (Current Debates).

Use this service to read bulletins and newsletter released by Parliament, Government, Finlex, the President of the Republic and The Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities. The democracy data bank provides information on Finnish democracy and its fundamental concepts, the rights of the citizens, opportunities for civic engagement and participation, the civic society, as well as on-going research and projects.

Legislative drafting

Lainvalmistelun prosessiopas (Guide to the legislative process). The guide provides a description of the legislative process from motion to implementation and compliance monitoring.


Vaalit.fi (Elections). The elections site maintained by the Ministry of Justice provides a complete range of information on practically all aspects of elections.

Vaalit / Tilastokeskus (Elections / Statistics Finland). The site operated by Statistics Finland provides statistics on election results, those entitled to vote, voting, candidates and those elected.

Forums for civic engagement

Right to submit initiatives

Avoin ministeriö (Accessible Ministry). Avoin ministeriö is a civic initiative service allowing registered users to propose ideas for inclusion in the service. Each idea is given a heading and includes a summary or a more extensive description if necessary. Other users can comment on the proposals and vote for or against them. The best ideas will be developed into legislative proposals.

Kansalaisaloite.fi (Citizen’s Initiative). Use this site to submit initiatives and support and monitor initiatives filed by others.

Kuntalaisaloite.fi (Municipal Initiative). Use this site to submit municipal initiatives and support and monitor initiatives filed by others.

European Citizen's Initiative is a site providing information on all EU citizens’ initiatives and the rules that govern such initiatives. The site can also be used for filing a citizen’s initiative.


EU-kansanäänestys 1994 = EU-folkomröstning 1994 = Finland's EU referendum 1994. Mielipiteen muodostus EU-kansanäänestyksessä : kantaaottamattomuudesta uurnille / Risto Sänkiaho (s. 21–30). Kansanäänestys, vaalit ja suora demokratia / Pertti Pesonen (s. 31–38). Vaalit = Val = Elections, 1995:2. Availability in the Library of Parliament

Luettelo toimitetuista kunnallisista kansanäänestyksistä vuodesta 1991 (List of local referendums since 1991). The list of all local referendums held in Finland during 1991–2012 indicates the date of voting, municipality, issue and the question asked, voter turnout, result and the final decision taken by the Local Council.

Political parties, advocacy and non-government organisations

Parliamentary groups. Parliament’s website listing the Members of Parliament divided into the parliamentary groups formed by political parties.

Pohtiva – data store for political programmes. The Pohtiva data store contains political programmes of 59 parties from the period 1880–2011.

Political parties. Links to political parties in Finland and 49 other countries.

Kansalaisyhteiskunta (Civic Society). The site is intended for Finnish NGOs and people interested in their activities. It provides basic information on the Finnish civic society and highlights topical issues and publications.

Lausuntopalvelu.fi (Statements & Opinions). The site offers a standardised online service for citizens, organisations and the authorities for publishing requests for statements and opinions, giving opinions and reviewing the opinions issued.

Public debate

Facebook democracy : the architecture of disclosure and the threat to public life / José Marichal. Farnham : Ashgate, 2012. 193 p. Availability in the Library of Parliament

Twitter : social communication in the Twitter age / Dhiraj Murthy. Cambridge : Polity, 2013. 193 p. Availability in the Library of Parliament

Democracy's double-edged sword : how Internet use changes citizens' views of their government / Catie Snow Bailard. Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, 2014.  162 p. Availability in the Library of Parliament

Otakantaa.fi (Public Debates). The site provides an opportunity to comment political decision making in preparation. The site offers the opportunity to participate in on-going debates and preparations or initiate a debate on a selected theme. Otakantaa.fi is a rendezvous for all citizens, government and decision makers.

Petitions, boycotts and demonstrations

Petitions Portal / European Parliament. The Petition Portal can be used for submitting a new petition or supporting an existing one. Use the search function to look up issues of interest to you and to see what EU issues preoccupy other citizens. The portal can be used for supporting pending petitions adopted by the Committee on Petitions for further processing.

Guides for civic engagement

Me voimme vaikuttaa - nuorten vaikuttamisopas (Guide for political participation for young people). Intended for people under 18, the guide provides useful information on how and where to have a say.

Vallakas – municipal resident’s guide for civic engagement. Vallakas is a manual for engagement at the local level. It provides information on how to influence issues in the local municipality and contribute to the development of the living environment and services. At the same time, Vallakas offers guidance for office holders and those in positions of trust on how to give greater attention to the residents’ views in municipal decision making.

Vaikuttajan reittikartta (Roadmap for having a say). The site serves as a road map for civic participation offering three options: 1) I want to have a say 2) I don’t want to have a say 3 ) Not interested. By selecting one of the options, you can start your journey to the world of civic engagement.