Home / Challenges and Opportunities for Democracy: Participatory Myths: Promotion by the Left and a Democratic Evolution with Dr. Yanina Welp
March 01, 2023 1:00 PM to 2:00 PMUptown Campus
Diverse mechanisms of participation have expanded in various parts of the world (referendums and initiatives, sorted assemblies, public conferences, participatory budgeting, and neighborhood councils, just to name a few). Why, by whom, and with which consequences? A common assumption connects social movements and political parties on the left with the promotion of citizen participation and with the expan- sion of democracy. However, empirical evidence shows a more complex picture. Instead, participatory institutions could be considered the result of institutional change processes in which political actors struggle over two different things: (1) competing ideas concerning the value of citizen participation (and democratic legitimacy) and (2) the balance of power between actors in a political system as well as the calculation of the benefits they could get (or not) by increasing political participation. The presentation will focus on the Latin American experience.
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