A referendum each for the resolution of two touchy issues

As far as referenda go, I think there’s general agreement on this: to ask Australians to consider, at the same referendum, two questions — one on Indigenous voice, and the other on a republic — is too big an ask. Nevertheless, we could do what the Irish did in 2012. Ireland held a Citizens’ Constitutional...

What Biden’s Democracy Summit Is Missing

U.S. President Joe Biden is set to host a virtual summit this week for leaders from government, civil society, and the private sector to discuss the renewal of democracy. We can expect to see plenty of worthy yet predictable issues discussed: the threat of foreign agents interfering in elections, online disinformation, political polarization, and the...Continue reading

Politicians should take citizens’ assemblies seriously

Last week, The Economist UK strongly and clearly endorsed that the use of juries of citizens warrants the attention of anyone seeking to do democracy better. At the core of their reasoning is a practical reality: real-world policy issues which would normally get mired in ‘politics-as-usual’ have been freed up and seen elected leaders from...Continue reading

Can we follow the French out of gridlock on climate?

By Luca Belgiorno-Nettis, July 8, 2020 Not since the war has an Australian government mobilised so comprehensively: $260 billion, or 13 per cent of the country’s GDP, is a whopping big number. It was only six months ago that Australia was tested by bushfires and floods, but those calamities have now been overtaken by another...

Malcolm Gladwell talks to Adam Cronkright on Democratic Lotteries

In Bolivia, a political activist radically reforms the voting process for… student council elections. Who else does he convince? Revisionist History. And maybe a fancy private school in New Jersey. http://leopard.megaphone.fm/CAD9439991498.mp3 Revisionist History, Season 5, Episode 3: The Powerball Revolution Student Government Lottery in Bolivia, video courtesy of Adam Cronkright and Democracy in Practice. Adam...Continue reading

Opinion: a new window has opened for deliberative democracy

By Luca Belgiorno-Nettis, Wednesday May 13, 2020 During this period of the pandemic, many have remarked how well the national cabinet has worked — something it rarely does. It would seem that we need a crisis for politicians to leave politics at the door. Why can’t they do it all the time? Do we really...

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