The divisions surrounding the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice to Parliament had as much to do with referendum process as anything else. The Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters missed a golden opportunity earlier this year when, in proposing a Bill to reform the referendum process, it ignored the advice of several prominent political scientists...Continue reading
By Luca Belgiorno-Nettis, in The Mandarin 3/8/2023 The way we do politics is all wrong, and the Voice highlights how bone-headed our system is. As the political scientist and my former co-director, Ian Marsh, said: ‘Firstly, political incentives undercut bipartisanship. Secondly, since the primary channel for the leaders is the media, there is no systemic ability to...Continue reading
In May 2023, the Association of Australia Medical Research Institutes (AAMRI) hosted a deliberative panel made up of 30 randomly-selected people drawn from medical research institute staff and researchers from across the country and stratified to match the medical research institute workforce in Australia by gender, seniority, job type and institute type. Over the course...
Peter Hartcher, Sydney Morning Herald – June 10, 2023 Australia is an entire continent that is failing to build enough homes for the population of a mere city, but the federal government’s plan to fix the crisis has hit a brick wall. That wall is political intransigence. Specifically, it’s the Coalition and the Greens. They’ve combined...Continue reading
Citizens’ juries can help fix democracy Western polities are ailing — deliberative assemblies would revivify them By Martin Wolf “Brexit has failed.” This is now the view of Nigel Farage, the man who arguably bears more responsibility for the UK’s decision to leave the EU than anybody else. He is right, not because the Tories...Continue reading
Quarterly Essay 83 Lone Wolf Correspondence Luca Belgiorno-Nettis The subtitle of Katharine Murphy’s Lone Wolf – “Albanese and the new politics” – is a tease. “New” works every time: new toothpaste, new art, new idea. There was little that was particularly new in the political campaigning of 2022 – except what catapulted six freshly minted...
President Biden convened the first Summit for Democracy following his election in 2021. The initial Summit focused on some ‘traditional’ democracy topics but tended to omit new and emerging approaches. newDemocracy was in contact with the US State Department to make the case that arguably Citizens Assemblies were arguably the most promising democratic innovation: in...Continue reading
Robert French, the former chief justice of the High Court, says ‘The Voice is a big idea, but not a complicated one.’ That may be true, but how do we really know? Currently, the parliament is considering a bill to improve the process of informing the Australian public about referenda questions. The bill contemplates suspending...Continue reading
Around Australia there is growing demand and momentum for deliberative engagement practice. This includes changes to the Victorian Local Government Act to mandate deliberative engagement practice, the NSW Government producing a deliberative democracy toolkit, and the increasing number of local councils and utilities making use of citizens’ panels or juries in their long-term strategic planning....Continue reading
We thank the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters for this opportunity to contribute to the inquiry into the provisions of the Referendum (Machinery Provisions) Amendment Bill 2022. Our submission is focused on the temporary disapplication of section 11 of the Referendum (Machinery Provisions) Act 1984 (Cth). The relevant clause: Section 11 of the Referendum (Machinery...