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Posts with the Tag “theory”

Systems Thinking

Systems theory is the understanding that a system is comprised of interrelated parts, which all interact with each other. A system is bigger than the sum of its parts. In education all of the educational parts or components are important. These include the teachers, parents, administration, politicians, community leaders, students, and the environment in which the system exists. These components interact not only with each other, but with this surrounding environment.... (continue)

Leave-Us-Alone Democracy

Editorial addressing a study showing that people don't want more political power, and that many would prefer less. The study by John R. Hibbing and Elizabeth A. Theiss-Morse concluded that people want the government's most important decisions to be made by leading experts in the field. (continue)

Deliberative Democracy and International Labor Standards

Political theorists have argued that the methods of deliberative democracy can help to meet challenges such as legitimacy, effective governance, and citizen education in local and national contexts. These basic insights can also be applied to problems of international governance such as the formulation, implementation, and monitoring of labor standards. A participatory and deliberative democratic approach to labor standards would push the labor-standards debate into the global public sphere. This discussion could potentially improve the quality of labor standards, their implementation, and the education and understanding of citizens. (continue)

Cognitive Dissonance Theory

Cognitive dissonance is a communication theory adopted from social psychology. The title gives the concept: cognitive is thinking or the mind; and dissonance is inconsistency or conflict. Cognitive dissonance is the psychological conflict from holding two or more incompatible beliefs simultaneously. Cognitive dissonance is a relatively straightforward social psychology theory that has enjoyed wide acceptance in a variety of disciplines including communication. (continue)

Language Expectancy Theory

Language Expectancy Theory is a formalized model about message strategies and attitude and behavior change. Message strategies include verbal aggressions like fear appeal, explicit opinions and language intensity which are more combat. Language Expectancy Theory assumes that language is a rule-governed system and people develop expectations concerning the language or message strategies employed by others in persuasive attempts (Burgoon, 1995). Expectations are a function of cultural and sociological norms and preferences arising from cultural values and societal standards or ideals for competent communication. (continue)

Directly-Deliberative Polyarchy

In this essay we defend a form of democracy that we will call "directly-deliberative polyarchy." We argue that it is an attractive kind of radical, participatory democracy with problem-solving capacities useful under current conditions and unavailable to representative systems. In directly deliberative polyarchy, collective decisions are made through public deliberation in arenas open to citizens who use public services, or who are otherwise regulated by public decisions. But in deciding, those citizens must examine their own choices in the light of the relevant deliberations and experiences of others facing similar problems in comparable jurisdictions or subdivisions of government. Ideally, then, directly deliberative polyarchy combines the advantages of local learning and self-government with the advantages (and discipline) of wider social learning and heightened political accountability that result when the outcomes of many concurrent experiments are pooled to permit public scrutiny of theeffectiveness of strategies and leaders. (continue)

Peter Levine’s Blog

Peter Levine is Director of CIRCLE, The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (www.civicyouth.org). CIRCLE conducts and funds research on young people's civic education and participation. Levine is also a Research Scholar at the Institute for Philosophy and Public Policy in the University of Maryland's School of Public Policy. He is chair of the executive committee of the Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools and a member of the executive committee of the Deliberative Democracy Consortium. Levine's blog primarily covers topics related to youth civic engagement and deliberative democracy. (continue)

Framing, Deliberation, and Opinions about Campaign Finance Reform

Public opinion research demonstrates that citizens' opinions depend on elite rhetoric and interpersonal conversations. Yet we continue to have little idea about how these two forces interact with one another. In this paper, the authors address this issue by experimentally examining how interpersonal conversations affect (prior) elite framing effects. Focusing on opinions about campaign finance reform, the authors find that conversations among like-minded people have no effect on elite framing, but conversations that include conflicting perspectives eliminate elite framing effects. (continue)

Theory U: Leading from the Future as It Emerges

Using his experience working with some of the world's most accomplished leaders and innovators, Otto Scharmer shows in Theory U how groups and organizations can develop seven leadership capacities in order to create a future that would not otherwise be possible.... (continue)

How Deliberation Affects Public Opinion

Democratic theorists argue that deliberation promotes consensus and enlightenment, but few explain how deliberation affects public opinion. This study develops a theory of deliberative opinion updating based upon Bayesian learning whereby citizens revise their prior beliefs with information obtained through discussion. The theory focuses analytical attention on both the opinions citizens report to survey researchers as well as the distributions of considerations underlying their individual attitudes. Application of the theory to a panel survey bracketing a deliberative forum and national surveys reveals that as expected, deliberation improves knowledge, affects the considerations underlying opinions, and alters references toward Social Security reform options. The results show that public discussion in an organized deliberative forum or in ordinary situations can increase knowledge and alter opinions, but it does so selectively based upon the quality and diversity of the deliberation. (continue)

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