What is Have Your Say?

Have Your Say is the democratic process for sharing and promoting University of Portsmouth students’ ideas. Popular ideas can create positive impacts for students at the Union, within the University and beyond.

How does Have Your Say work?

Ideas submitted first need to be proven to be popular with students. In the first backing stage, you must get the support of 15 students to effectively ‘sign’ your idea petition, in order for the idea to progress. If an idea fails to get the backing of 15 students, it may not be in the wider student-body’s interest.

Ideas, once backed, are reviewed by the Union Actioning Body in a bi-weekly meeting. Some ideas may be very straightforward, that are within the Union’s resources to action more quickly, these ideas are sorted into the ‘Action’ pathway and assigned a UAB champion to take the lead on seeing these ideas get actioned. 

Some ideas may concern bigger changes at University, local or even national level, where the Union may have limited influence. These ideas often need the backing of more students in order to action them and make them stick. Ideas that need the support of more students are sorted in to the ‘Reaction’ pathway and are promoted to the whole student-body to get their opinion, and capture whether they agree or disagree with the idea in an online poll. At least 100 students (quorum) must vote in the online poll in order for it to be considered valid and representative of the student-body. Ideas can also be voted either up or down, popular ideas will pass if enough students agree with them but if you don’t agree with an idea you can vote it down too. If the online poll reaches quorum, then the idea is only passed if the majority of students participating (50%+1) agree.

Ideas with strong student support help to give the Union and our representatives a clear mandate to make changes on and off campus, on students behalf, and helps prioritise the ideas that matter most to the student-body.

My idea has passed! What happens next?

Your idea has been popular with most students and has now passed to be actioned by the Union. Your idea, similar to those that were ‘fast-tracked’ to the ‘Action’ pathway, is assigned 

A UAB champion at the next available meeting. They will work to see your idea come to pass, which may involve negotiations with the University, researching suppliers or actioning Union staff to help get your idea off the ground. Your idea champion will make regular updates to the idea page to keep you and followers informed, you may even keep in contact with them, in person or via email, depending on the complexity of your idea and how involved you wish to be as the instigator.

Not all ideas happen overnight. Some changes, especially those within the University, sometimes take a little time and patience to achieve. Have Your Say has been designed to be as transparent as possible, with UAB representatives able to offer regular updates and accountability for their activity. At any point throughout the process, you can contact the Union, or your idea champion(s) once assigned, if you require an update or are unsatisfied with any part of the process.

How do I submit an idea?

Submitting an idea is relatively straightforward. The title of your idea should clearly communicate what it is you want to achieve or change. It could be in the form of a question, for example ‘Should we ban bottled water on campus?’. The rest of the form helps to capture the details of your idea, how it benefits students and the ways in which it could be achieved. The more rationale and detail you can offer, the more likely your idea will be understood and supported by other students.

Once your idea has been submitted, you need to get support for your idea! As the idea submitter, it’s your responsibility to get other students involved, to share your idea and get backers to have it progress to the review stage. 

At review, if your idea can be more easily achieved, UAB will pass it to the ‘Action’ pathway to be realised sooner. Your idea may require the support of more students in order to be actioned by the Union, in which case you’ll need to share your idea further and get at least 100 students to vote in favour of your idea for it to be prioritised by the Union. The Union will also regularly promote ideas in the ‘Reaction’ pathway at roadshows on campus, in email newsletters and social media. 

If your idea is successfully passed by UAB or other students, then your idea champion should be in touch and keep you and other followers updated of any progress, as they work to realise your idea.