You can find heated discussions about what's wrong with politics in pubs and at dinner tables around Canberra, and now the Greens are hoping to turn those conversations into something they could actually use in parliament.
Greens candidate for the seat of Canberra at next year's federal election Tim Hollo will on Wednesday launch a project called "People In", where interested locals will be invited to a series of events to help shape ideas and policies the party should be focusing on during the campaign.
Mr Hollo says the people involved would have so much power over how the process would work, that he doesn't yet know what the meetings would look like, how often they would be, or how issues would be debated.
Following a few introductions, participants will decide the structure of the People In project at the first meeting on Wednesday night, to be facilitated by Toni Hassan, an adjunct research fellow at Charles Sturt University.
Asking Canberrans to contribute in this way is necessary as recent studies show Australians are losing trust in democracy, according to the candidate.
"On climate change, refugees, planning and housing and so much more, it's tragically obvious that our politics is failing us," Mr Hollo said.
"But it doesn't have to be this way. We can put in place good policies like donations reform and a federal ICAC to get the big corporations out of politics. And we can open the doors and bring the people in."
The aim of the project is to have people involved with decision-making more often than at election time.
"Democracy should be far more than being asked to cast your vote once every few years. It should involve genuine participation in the decisions that affect our lives and our future," Mr Hollo said.
"Participation makes for better policy, better politics, and better, more cohesive and resilient communities."
Following a trip to Barcelona to view similar projects at local level, and research into another version in London, Mr Hollo is keen to try it out in Canberra.
Mr Hollo denies the plan is outsourcing the work that would usually be done by expert advisers, especially in a town brimming with policy specialists and academics.
"It's absolutely not replacing expert advice," Mr Hollo said.
"The role isn't to ask citizens 'Do you think climate change is an issue?', the assumption is that climate change is an issue, a very serious issue. So the question becomes 'What do we want to do about it?'
The project is being run with the Canberra Alliance for Participatory Democracy, which Mr Hollo says is independent of the Greens and would run similar processes for other parties if they were interested.
The Greens are making a concerted challenge for the seat of Canberra, a new electorate since the recent redistribution, which takes in the city's inner suburbs in both the north and south. Labor's Alicia Payne is also running for the seat, and Mr Hollo has even signalled Ms Payne and other candidates would be welcome at such meetings in the lead up to the election.