- Slides: 9
DEMOCRATIC CULTURAL POLICY: WHICH DEMOCRACY? WHICH CULTURE? WHICH POLICY? Clive Gray De Montfort University
DEFINING TERMS • Democracy: mechanisms for participating in making collective decisions • Culture: what governments define it as being or make policies on • Policy: choices about courses of action
DEMOCRATIC FORMS • Direct democracy through voting (referenda) • Representative democracy through elected representatives (assemblies/executives) • Democratic elitism through stakeholders (arm’s-length/technocrats) • Deliberative democracy through value clarification (discursive practices)
ASSESSING FORMS • Direct/indirect involvement of citizens • Role of policy experts (technocrats/mediators/facilitators) • Role of elected representatives • Information access/quality
DIRECT DEMOCRACY • Open vote on a given subject • Inclusive of all • Ignorance? Incompetence? Money talks? Other issues decide? • ‘Not proven’ • Limited evidence • Trust the people?
REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY • • Assembly/executive relations Less inclusive of all: one step removed Knowledge/expertise/continuity? Whose interests are served? /cui bono? Electoral legitimacy Democratic sub-optimality ‘High’/’low’ politics
DEMOCRATIC ELITISM • Public choice between competing groups • Insulation of power-holders from direct control • Technical/professional/non-party political/authoritative? • Coherent/focused/accountable? • Technically ‘better’ policies?
DELIBERATIVE DEMOCRACY • Based on informed, reflective opinion: ‘talkcentric’ • Active/open engagement of groups/citizens • ‘Better’ policy? Expense? • Symbolic rather than effective engagement? • Who manages the system? How is it managed? Democratic elitism by another name?
CONSEQUENCES • • Direct/indirect citizen involvement Role of policy experts Role of elected representatives Information access/quality