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Democracy 2.0

I envisage a shift in democracy, particularly the democratic process and the underlying principles. At the moment it's applied in quite a crude way, and uses techniques which were best fit for purpose 100 years ago (voting every few years; party manifestoes; horse trading in which some issues and wishes are compromised in the need to reach agreement on others…). But now, imagine that you can express your opinion in a more immediate, direct way, on the issues that count for you.

A new model of democracy, enabled by new ICT and media, can take account of the particularities of a street, village, community, region, country, block, or whatever in a flexible and adaptable way. It would enable direct consultation on issues, large or small, on different scales and for different implementation. This doesn't mean demagogy - safeguards can be built in to avoid silly outcomes - but it can address a pressing need for accountability. 

For more details, see http://bit.ly/UKtwum

For full transparency, I should point out that this idea has been gestated and developed by Denis Beckett, my kinsman. I claim no paternal credit but am happy to foster it.  

This vision could underpin the new Citizen Initiative, implementing article 11.4 of the EU Treaty.

 

Challenges: 
  • Developing the model together with the IT tools and media so as to enable this to work.
Opportunities: 
  • Remedying the "democratic deficit" at all levels;
  • increasing citizen engagement and involvement;
  • strengthening a civil society that can simultaneously be diverse, inclusive and representative.
Timeframe: 
2025
Desirability: 

Likelihood: 

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