Micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) play a critical role in the economy, comprising approximately 90% of businesses, providing over 50% of employment globally, and contributing around 40% to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in emerging economies. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the business operations of MSMEs and resulting employment opportunities were significantly affected. Furthermore, it has been observed that following the COVID-19 pandemic, the informal economy expanded, which negatively affects the sustainability of economies
In partnership with Makati Business Club (MBC)’s Digital Democracy project, Layertech and academe partners analyzed citizen feedback to inform policy and programs of two Local Government Units (LGUs) in the Philippines on how to best support Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) that were negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
LEGAZPI CITY: https://legazpi.gov.ph/
The city government of Legazpi and partner stakeholders acknowledge the critical role of family businesses and MSMEs in the local economy, especially at the time of the COVID-19 pandemic. To better understand the sentiments and needs of family businesses and MSMEs in the city, Legazpi joined the Digital Democracy program in collecting and analyzing citizen feedback data to inform policy and decision-making. A series of online consultations with Legazpi city and stakeholders were conducted to formulate a total of 55 survey statements related to the survey objectives. Respondents voted either ‘agree’, ‘disagree’, or ‘pass’ for each statement, with open-ended feedback at the end to submit additional qualitative responses. An online citizen assembly was held on August 2, 2021, to explain the program objectives and kick off the feedback collection process. Using Pol.Is as data collection tool, the survey ran for a total of 11 days, from August 2, 2021, to August 13, 2021, with a total of 327 respondents and 16,454 votes. After tabulation and analysis, the results were presented in the closing citizen assembly on August 18, 2021.
ILIGAN CITY: https://www.iligan.gov.ph/
The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted business operations and resulting employment opportunities in Iligan City. In order to craft policies and programs that best support formal and informal MSMEs in the locality, the city government of Iligan sought the opinions of its constituents through the Digital Democracy project. A series of online consultations with Iligan City was conducted to formulate a 45-statement open-ended survey through the Pol.Is platform. Respondents voted either ‘agree’, ‘disagree’, or ‘pass’ for every statement presented to them. An online citizen assembly was held on September 16, 2021, to explain the survey objectives and kick off the feedback collection process. The survey ran for a total of 13 days, with a total of 221 respondents and 5,296 votes. After tabulation and analysis, the survey results were presented in the closing citizen assembly on September 30, 2021, as a centerpiece for discussion.
Both local governments had a dialogue with their stakeholders during the closing citizen assembly. Proposed ‘next steps’ were given by attendees, and the LGUs vowed to do their best to address the key concerns and craft policies and projects that are more inclusive and tailor-fit to the needs of their constituents.
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