Do the interesting developments in terms of administrative modernisation and technical democracy have any equivalent with regard to social justice? In the discourse of the alter-globalisation movement, the Porto Alegre instrument was presented as a springboard for an alternative to neoliberalism. Serious studies show that the Latin American participatory budgets have had a remarkable social impact (Marquetti, de Campos and Pires 2008, BIRD and BM 2008), both because they include criteria of distributive justice that encourage the allocation of resources to the most disadvantaged, and because the latter become involved in the process. Participatory budgeting there has generally come to be considered an instrument of the poor. What is the situation in Europe?