Episode 12: Online Deliberation – Opportunities and Challenges with Graham Smith



Professor Graham Smith is a Professor in Politics at the University of Westminster, London. Graham has a wealth of experience with deliberative democracy.

The COVID-19 pandemic led to some swift re-design among those who facilitate face-to-face public deliberations. In this episode, Graham Smith raises many interesting questions and offers some warnings as well. But, importantly, the conversation ends with a level of excitement about the potential for deliberative designers to radically improve the practice of public deliberations through online experimentation.

Graham Smith is Professor of Politics and Director of the Centre for the Study of Democracy, University of Westminster, UK. He is a specialist in democratic theory and practice, with particular expertise in democratic innovations – new forms of participation in political decision making. His publications include Democratic Innovations: Designing Institutions for Citizen Participation(Cambridge, 2009) and Can Democracy Protect the Future? (Polity, forthcoming). He was one of the organisers of the Citizens’ Assembly on Brexit which proved influential in the development of citizens’ assemblies in the UK.  Graham is an investigator on a number of international research projects on democratic engagement, including Participedia, a global knowledge platform on participatory governance, and Scholio, testing argument visualization platforms to improve public discourse on online news comments. He is Chair of the Foundation for Democracy and Sustainable Development.

Music acknowledgement.

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