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Back to Panel Details
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Democratic Innovations and Local Democracy

Comparative Politics
Democracy
Local Government
Political Participation
Referendums and Initiatives
P087
Angelika Vetter
Universität Stuttgart
Brigitte Geißel
Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universität Frankfurt
Brigitte Geißel
Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universität Frankfurt

Thursday 15:50 - 17:30 (07/09/2017)

Building: BL27 Georg Sverdrups hus Floor: 3 Room: GS 3512

Abstract

In order to mitigate various shortcomings of modern democracies that are often related to globalisation and modernization, it is especially local politics where citizens, public administrations and politics are currently experiencing to different degrees with “democratic innovations”, including forms of direct democracy (referenda), other forms of informal participation (e.g. round tables, mini publics …) or citizen initiatives aiming at direct problem-solving without the intervention of public authorities. Many of these efforts are currently to be observed across Europe especially in local politics. One of the advantages of local politics research is the high number of cases that can be studied and compared not even within but also across countries. A problem, however, is that local democratic innovations vary to a great extent in their formats, and that there are hardly any large databases that can be used for studying their use, their origins, or effects systematically. This is why there are still many open questions to be answered, e.g. with regard to the conditions under which such activities take place (or are initiated), why certain forms are preferred, or what effects they have and why. One of the most important questions taps the relationship of democratic innovations and representative democracy, as new forms of citizen participation are often assumed to “cure” modern democracies (which are all more or less representative) from “democratic malaise”. Within the ECPR two Standing Groups (the one on "Democratic Innovations" and the one on "Local Government and Politics" are dealing with the questions outlined. This panel wants to bring together researchers from the two Standing Groups in order to discuss similar research questions from different backgrounds regarding origins and consequences of democratic innovations in local democracy, but also problems of measurement and the relationship between democratic innovations and local representative democracy.
Title Details
What about the Representativeness of our Cases? 'Big Data' and the Use of Democratic Innovations View Paper Details
We Participate, Someone Decides and Nobody Explains. Accountability Practices in Local Participatory Processes View Paper Details
How Participatory and Deliberative is your Municipality? Measuring Participatory, Deliberative and Direct Democratic Possibilities at the Sub-national Level View Paper Details
Developing Tools for “Blended Democracy” in Regional Governance: A Design Experiment View Paper Details
Synching Representation: The Effects of Bottom-Up Direct Democratic Institutions on Government Responsiveness View Paper Details