NewDemocracy is an independent, non-partisan research and development organisation. We aim to discover, develop, demonstrate, and popularise complementary alternatives which will restore trust in public decision making.
We conduct real world trials using random selection and deliberation - the jury model - as a central process.
The Magna Carta is a touchstone for democracy: a devolution of power from an absolute Monarch to his subjects. The Treaty, in all its chapters, became a complementary measure to the way the King, the government of the day, governed.
Last year, on the 800th anniversary of that treaty, we thought a further measure might better reflect the aspirations of Australians.
We think a complementary house of randomly selected people - A Citizens' Senate - could be trialed as a third house of Parliament.
We might be wrong, and that’s why we think a fair method for studying this measure, along with any others, is to put the question to a Convention, and let them spend some months deliberating on the measures.
The Irish Constitutional Convention of 2013 is a precedent in this regard.
The Irish had a mix of everyday people selected by lot (as in a jury) together with politicians - two thirds/one third.
In Australia, we could do something similar to consider: ‘How can we do democracy better?’ and report back to Parliament.
Submissions would come from all and sundry on how to improve our government.
Democracy is more than ‘the vote’ - it’s a way of organising ourselves, for no other reason than for ourselves.
Australia is a representative democracy. Citizens who are equal, with a shared responsibility for good government, elect people of different backgrounds and perspectives to set community standards. Those elected are not obliged to tell the truth or act in the public interest or forbidden to act in their own interests or the interests of their...
In developing its 5-year costed plan, Yarra Valley Water must pair customer and community feedback with their own in-depth knowledge of their water and sewerage networks, and the challenges these services face. Pricing cannot simply be an expert task.
Additionally, Yarra Valley Water is faced with the fact that water and sanitation...
The Foundation exists with a goal of finding improvements to how we make trusted public decisions - democratic decisions – which represent the informed general will of the people. To do so, we seek to run practical projects in controversial areas of low public trust and where genuine public discourse is impossible as the topic generates...
The City of Greater Bendigo has a large urban area home to around 85% of the local government area's population; in turn this is surrounded by an array of rural areas and small towns. In most circumstances this pattern generally leads to a sense that the centre “gets everything” at the expense of the outer areas. We had no idea of the...