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Innovative Consultation Processes and the Changing Role of Activism

Innovative forms of public participation challenge the idea that activists must inevitably be caught up in consultation methods that are tokenistic or manipulative. Citizens’ juries, consensus conferences, deliberative polls and televotes — these methods hold promise for enhanced representativeness and offer the added benefit of creating deliberative spaces for sound decision making. In this article by Lyn Carson, these robust methods are described and their relevance to collective action is discussed.

Activists are advised to engage in reflective practice and to relinquish the ineffective role of committee member in situations where representativeness is a requirement. Instead of claiming to represent the entire community, activists are encouraged to adopt more appropriate and satisfying roles including that of expert.

Third Sector Review, 7 (1), 7-22 (2001)

Resource Link: www.activedemocracy.net/articles/08_activism.pdf

We learned about this resource from the IAP2 Knowledge Network, whose Resource Database lists over 300 resources. Go to www.iap2.civicore.com to explore the feature.

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