Summer 2017

Deliberative Democracy as Open, Not (Just) Representative Democracy

Author
Hélène Landemore
Abstract
Is deliberative democracy a dated paradigm for a precrisis order, maladjusted to the world of Occupy, the Pirate Party, the Zapatistas, and other antirepresentative movements? And is deliberative democracy thus at risk of becoming collateral damage of the current crisis of representative democracy? In this essay, Hélène Landemore argues that in order to retain its normative appeal and political relevance, deliberative democracy should dissociate itself from representative democracy and reinvent itself as the core of a more truly democratic paradigm, which she calls open democracy. In open democracy, popular rule means the mediated but real exercise of power by ordinary citizens. This new paradigm privileges nonelectoral forms of representation, and in it, power is meant to remain constantly inclusive of and accessible to all citizens.
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