This report from Communities and Local Government summarises the evaluation.
Participatory Budgeting helps to improve relationships within communities and between communities and service providers. In addition, the process draws on local knowledge and opinions to ensure resources are spent on what matters to local people.
The case study evidence indicated that Participatory Budgeting was often developed to complement existing community engagement and empowerment initiatives, and for the most part it was viewed as one of a number of community empowerment tools.
The benefit to emerge from the evaluation is that people feel a greater sense of their ability to influence local decision-making. Other benefits include improved relationships between councillors and their constituents, local people’s views on how to allocate resources was given greater prominence and areas were able to lever in additional resources.
The report is available from CLG. http://www.communities.gov.uk/documents/communities/pdf/1509753.pdf