ECPR

Install the app

Install this application on your home screen for quick and easy access when you’re on the go.

Just tap Share then “Add to Home Screen”

ECPR

Install the app

Install this application on your home screen for quick and easy access when you’re on the go.

Just tap Share then “Add to Home Screen”

Back to Paper Details
Back to Paper Details

Reconciling Democracy and Expertise by Institutional Design

Comparative Politics
Democracy
Institutions
Knowledge
Decision Making
Eva Krick
Universitetet i Oslo
Eva Krick
Universitetet i Oslo

Abstract

This paper engages with political science’s central theoretical debate about the relationship and tensions between the democratic legitimacy and epistemic quality of collective decisions. This ‘epistemic-democratic tension’ has lately been exacerbated by modern society’s growing reliance on expertise for solving increasingly complex and technical collective problems and by decreasing levels of confidence in the representative model of democracy and in elite-driven decision-making. The paper explores in how far these, partly conflictual, normative demands can be reconciled by institutional design. For that purpose, it combines in-depth empirical case studies of political institutions with a two-dimensional normative assessment framework and asks under which organisational conditions both knowledge-based and expert-approved as well as deliberative and participatory policy-making processes can be achieved. Epistemic and democratic standards are derived from normative debates within deliberative democracy, the sociology of knowledge and social epistemology and applied to particularly ambitious and innovative arenas of policy advice and consultation in energy and climate policy.