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Home arrow Political science arrow Evaluating Democratic Innovations: Curing the Democratic Malaise?


  • 1 For up-to-date information on deliberative polls, see
  • 2 The Citizens’ Assembly’s dedicated website provides reports, videos and other information:
  • 3 There is a striking similarity between the design of the BCCA and the randomly selected advisory councils or ‘mini-populus’ that Robert Dahl has on occasion promoted (Dahl 1970: 149-53; 1989: 340). One significant difference, however, is that Dahl envisioned these as advisory bodies, not connected to a binding referendum (Smith 2009).
  • 4 See for details of the referendum results.
  • 5 See the Assembly’s dedicated website for reports, videos and other information http:// www. citizensassembly.
  • 6 Available at aspx?lang=en-ca&gf73=0&contestid=2&channel_id={923146e7-4d81-42a8-99f0- e61f5ab50387}&lang=enm.
  • 7 A rare example of the use of random selection beyond mini-publics is the appointment process for Community Fund regional boards in England (Smith 2005: 61-2). The irony is that this public body uses a form of lottery to select citizens to sit on boards that make decisions about the distribution of national lottery funds!
  • 8 John Forester (1999) is a rare theorist who has focused attention on the role of democratic facilitation, but predominantly within the planning process - a context very different from mini-publics.
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