Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Urban and Regional Planning


Planning and Urban Studies

Major Professor

Ehrenfeucht, Renia

Second Advisor

Nelson, Marla

Third Advisor

Villavaso, Stephen


The Inter American Development Bank describes Brazil's orçamento participativo (OP) or participatory budgeting process as "an instrument of empowerment and social inclusion" implemented by the Worker's Party to foster the "efficient and democratic allocation of resources and citizen involvement in the planning and management of their localities" (Serageldin, 2005: 4). Although the Inter American Development Bank refers to the OP as an empowering process it provides no formal framework for measuring the level of empowerment experienced by the participants. Three factors are necessary for social inclusion and empowerment; 1) spatial integration, 2) decision making power and 3) the creation of empowered, organized citizen groups. By outlining the steps of empowerment and social inclusion, this thesis provides a framework of measurement specific to the OP process and its use in favela upgrading. This evaluation can be used by government and international non-profits that require participation and empowering processes for the provision of funds.


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