Tomas Rakos is an expert on public participation and community engagement who has worked on over 200 projects in such countries as US, UK, France, Tunisia, Colombia, India, Zambia, and the Czech Republic.
Tom’s key expert areas include participation process design, stakeholder mapping and engagement, youth participation strategies, civic tech consulting, participatory budgeting, participatory urban planning, quantitative and qualitative data gathering and analysis, project and organization management, strategic planning for communities of various sizes, and capacity building.
In the past he co-founded and ran D21, social enterprise that provided SW and consulting services on public engagement processes.
He led a team that for the past four years implemented digital voting solution for the NYC Participatory Budgeting (PB) process. Besides NYC, he has been practically involved in around 20 other PB processes in the Czech Republic, India, Zambia, France and Scotland.
He is currently focusing on bringing participatory principles into smart city planning processes.
His cooperation with the City of Prague’s Institute of Planning and Development led into creation of series of policy analysis and strategic recommendation papers on how to implement better participatory strategies in areas of urban planning and placemaking as well as systematic changes in structures of the municipality’s government bodies and departments in favor of more inclusive and participatory approach.
Tom is frequent lecturer and trainer for audiences of mayors, city officials, participation practitioners, government institutions, urban planners, media and NGO workers.
He is a founder of the ParticipationFactory – international consulting group which helps governments on all levels with designs of participatory processes, civic-tech implementation and capacity building.
Tomas is a former Czech Radio and Czech Television reporter where he worked as a Middle East correspondent. He studied Arabic and Hebrew Studies at the Charles University in Prague. He speaks Czech, English, Hebrew and German.
He is based in Prague, Czech Republic.