Politicians at both national and local level are finding it increasingly difficult to engage communities and are looking for innovative ways to achieve this when interest in formal political structures has declined.
This webinar will look at one international innovation and ask what lessons it has for us both at national and local level.
The Citizen’s Assembly, British Columbia, Canada
The Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform was a body created by the government of British Columbia, Canada.
Its enacting legislation required that, “The Citizens’ Assembly is to be broadly representative of the adult population of British Columbia, particularly respecting age, gender, and geographical distribution.” to participate.
The BC Citizens’ Assembly on Electoral Reform was composed 160 members, one man and one woman from each of BC’s 79 electoral districts, plus two Aboriginal members. Assembly members were selected by a civic lottery that ensured a gender balance and a fair representation of the province’s age and geographical distribution. Selecting members for the Assembly was a three-stage process:
Perry Walker will present this webinar. Perry is an innovator of participatory methods that anyone can use. Over the last ten years he has led the development of Democs, a conversation game, which provides a unique opportunity for small groups to find out about complex policy issues like climate change or nanotechnology, to shape and share their opinions, and to provide feedback for policymakers. Democs has been used by tens of thousands of people all over Europe.
Until 2011, he was head of the Democracy and Participation programme at nef (the new economics foundation). He now works mainly on developing two other approaches: www.openupuk.org and http://www.openupuk.org, a site that helps people grapple with complex ethical and political issues using 'argument maps'; and Crowd Wise, a method for consensus decision-making.
World Lecture Project
This is one of a series of webinar that we hope to present and that will be global in scope. We will be presenting these in collaboration with the World Lecture Project an initiative to bring bring world lectures to a wider audience.
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