Kristen Veit, Director of Community Engagement Strategy at coUrbanize, wanted to empower more people where they live and work to share their feedback on community projects. “When our customers listen to community members and incorporate their feedback, it’s a win-win: better projects get built and there is higher local support.“ said Kristen.
"Our customers, real estate developers and city planners, post frequent updates and community members post comments daily. Therefore, we needed a solution that would allow translations to happen in real time." - Kristen Veit, Dir. of Community Engagement Strategy
When coUrbanize came to Localize they had two specific challenges. First, they needed a platform where the specific needs for each city project plan could easily be met. Next, the diverse language requirements needed to be quickly translated because community members and project teams are communicating in real time. The solution coUrbanize created was the Language Equity Plan (LEP) to ensure that people whose primary language was not English could have a say in what was built in their neighborhoods.
They determined that if a secondary language has a saturation level of 5% or more in a given community, the project on coUrbanize would be translated in those corresponding languages. This enables more people to participate on the platform without a language barrier that often stands in their way.
"One of the most important features we were looking for was the ability to automatically approve and translate all the content on our project websites." - Kristen Veit, Dir. of Community Engagement Strategy
The newly launched Language Equity Plan (LEP) ensured that community minorities can have a say in what gets built in their neighborhoods. “Localize is a scalable solution that allows us to offer the right translations for all of our customers. We're the only community engagement platform that is currently offering this,” said Kristen.
"The set-it-and-forget-it approach was a huge time saver and also allowed Localize to be a scalable solution. By simply implementing the Localize code with automatic translations, we’re able to use it across all of our projects." - Kristen Veit, Dir. of Community Engagement Strategy
Translation is now standard across all coUrbanize projects for languages that meet the threshold of their Language Equity Plan. The combination of quality machine translations as their foundation with an option to utilize human translators to proofread these translations was a core reason coUrbanize chose to work with Localize.
As their business grows, they continue to use Localize more and more to provide high-quality translations for all projects on coUrbanize.
So far, coUrbanize has successfully launched 32 community projects using 25 unique languages to reach the various native languages within each community. “We’ve been able to fully roll out our Language Equity Plan. We can now offer translations to even our smallest municipal and affordable housing customers. We’re excited to take this big step toward a more equitable and inclusive community engagement process.”
There has been a remarkable response to the Language Equity Plan initiative. To date, coUrbanize has created over 600,000 translations to get the word out, and it’s working.