Bridging the Gap: Ximena Peredo's Journey from Activism to Collaborative Politics

  • Ximena Peredo’s story is an example of a remarkable journey, from being an activist and columnist to becoming the Secretary of Citizen Participation in Nuevo León, Mexico, where she pioneers collaborative and open governance models.
  • Peredo’s approach challenges traditional political paradigms, emphasizing the transformative power collaborative decision-making in healing the relationship between government and civil society.
Ximena Peredo recieving the Democratic Innovator of the 21st Century in the Athens Democracy Forum 2023

In the realm of modern politics, where courage, trust, and ethical leadership are often elusive, Ximena Peredo’s journey from activism to politics stands as a testament to the transformative power of inclusive governance. As the Secretary of Citizen Participation for the state government of Nuevo Leon in Mexico, Peredo and her team have been instrumental in reshaping the narrative around citizen engagement and collaborative decision-making.

A Surprising Honor

Ximena Peredo recently received the Democratic Innovators of the 21st Century Award, Politicians’ Hall of Fame, announced at the Athens Democracy Forum in association with Apolitical Foundation, thanks to the postulation that Auna, a platform that promotes new political representations with women’s leadership, made acknowledging the potential of Ximena and other women to bring positive and innovative change in the realm of politics.

From Activism to Politics

Peredo’s transition from activism to politics was far from expected. Initially an activist and columnist, she entered the political arena during the 2021 elections when she ran for deputy. Motivated by a desire to address the diminishing influence of citizens in public decisions, Peredo accepted the challenge to become the first Secretary of the newly established Ministry of Citizen Participation in Nuevo Leon, invited by the elected governor Samuel García.

Breaking Down Barriers

The establishment of the Ministry of Citizen Participation faced initial resistance, both within Peredo’s team and in societal perceptions that government and civil society were inherently adversarial. Peredo and her team now work hard to emphasize the importance of bridging this gap and dispelling the myth that these entities are fundamentally opposed.

Navigating the Complexities

Peredo acknowledges the complexity of the processes and the need for incremental steps. The Ministry of Citizen Participation focuses on building internal capacities within the government and straightening and facilitating civic spaces with civil society organizations and other activists to activate citizen participation. She underscores the importance of developing methodologies that facilitate genuine dialogue between the government and the people.

Rebuilding Trust

Rebuilding trust with civil society, particularly with assiduous activists, poses a significant challenge. In the A political Hope Podcast episode where Ximena is interviewed, she shares personal experiences of facing skepticism from former supporters who perceived her transition into politics as a betrayal of her activist roots. She emphasizes the ongoing process of rebuilding relationships and gaining credibility.

Feminine Leadership in Politics

Peredo introduces a unique perspective on feminine leadership in politics, noting that as more women enter politics, a shift occurs from a competitive and adversarial approach to a collaborative and supportive one. This shift is characterized by complimenting colleagues, building alliances, and recognizing the collective intelligence that diverse perspectives bring to the table.

A Call to Action

Peredo’s testimony  is a powerful message to fellow activists, urging them to step into politics without fear of losing their personal principles. She encourages a new form of activism—working within the government to bring about positive change. The call is clear: government needs people who understand the power of citizen anger and activism.

Listen to the A Political Hope Podcast's Episode

Recorded at the Athens Democracy Forum in September 2023, where Ximena was named as one of the Democratic Innovators of the 21st Century bye The Apolitical Foundation and The Democracy & Culture Foundation

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