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Political Research Exchange - PRX

Regional Assemblies and Citizen Engagement: Democratic Innovations in Multilevel States

Democracy
 
Institutions
 
Political Participation
 
Regionalism
 
Political Engagement
 
Presenter
Elodie Fabre
Queen's University Belfast
Authors
Elodie Fabre
Queen's University Belfast

Abstract

One of the main arguments in favour of regionalism and devolution is that they bring democracy closer to the people. The development of regional government across Europe over the last twenty-thirty years has provided more opportunities for citizen engagement, from voting in regional elections to getting involved in regional political organisations and institutions. This research will evaluate whether institutions have taken regionalisation and devolution as opportunities to engage with citizens in new, innovative ways, such as e-petitions, consultation mechanisms such as deliberative/civic forums, or consultative referendums. By comparing the use of democratic innovations at the national and regional levels in the UK and in Spain, it will focus on the institutional incentives for citizen participation in state and regional government and assess whether regional institutions have taken their lead from the national level and which factors, such as party in government, extent of regional political arena, and policy networks have contributed to or hindered the adoption of democratic innovations.

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