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Nine - Conclusion

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 April 2023

Nicole Curato
Affiliation:
University of Canberra
David Farrell
Affiliation:
University College Dublin
Brigitte Geissel
Affiliation:
Goethe-Universität Frankfurt Am Main
Kimmo Grönlund
Affiliation:
Åbo Akademi University, Finland
Patricia Mockler
Affiliation:
Queen's University, Ontario
Jean-Benoit Pilet
Affiliation:
Université Libre de Bruxelles
Alan Renwick
Affiliation:
University College London
Jonathan Rose
Affiliation:
Queen's University, Ontario
Maija Setälä
Affiliation:
University of Turku, Finland
Jane Suiter
Affiliation:
Dublin City University
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Summary

Introduction

In her latest book, Hélène Landemore (2020) writes of ‘open democracies’ in which ordinary citizens have a more significant role in our systems of democratic representation. For her, recent examples of DMPs, such as the ambitious Icelandic experiment of 2010–13 or the French Climate Assembly, represent important steps towards a renewed democratic system in which DMPs operate side-by-side with representative institutions. In this book, we, as a collective set of authors, remain neutral on the question of where these growing instances of DMPs may be heading; each one of us may have our own views on this subject, but we have deliberately steered clear of addressing such themes in this book. Rather, our aim has been quite specific, namely, to set out the core characteristics of DMPs (the focus of Chapters Two to Six) and to examine how these mini-publics connect to the wider public (the focus of Chapters Seven and Eight).

We conclude in this chapter by addressing three themes. We first set out some minimal standards that we think are central to a well-designed DMP, drawing from the core design features set out in the previous chapters. Second, we discuss the importance of robust and independent evaluation of DMPs, particularly those that have been established by political actors. Third, we consider the implications of a global pandemic for DMPs, both in regard to how DMPs – with their emphasis on close and intense discussion – can operate, and in relation to the contribution that DMPs can make to developing responses to such significant societal challenges.

Minimal standards for a DMP

We feel it is important to set down clear minimum standards. At a time when the number of DMPs is increasing rapidly, there is an ever-increasing risk to the DMP ‘brand’ that could result from a poorly designed process. In the preceding chapters, we reviewed the core design features of a DMP. In this section, we condense this into four key features that we feel any forum claiming to be a DMP should be measured against.

Who are the participants and how are they selected?

At the heart of a DMP is the random selection of its members. There are three features that we single out here.

Type
Chapter
Information
Deliberative Mini-Publics
Core Design Features
, pp. 127 - 135
Publisher: Bristol University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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