The Democracy : New Developments

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2.3 Deliberative democracy: new developments As research done within the area of deliberative democracy, and deliberation in general, is still ongoing, this study relies on a newer approach to deliberative democracy mainly inspired by Dryzek (2010). According to Dryzek (2010), “a system can be said to possess deliberative capacity to the degree it has structures to accommodate deliberation that is authentic, inclusive and consequential”[emphasis in original] (Dryzek, 2010, p. 10). More specifically, this means: • Authentic: Deliberation should encourage reflection upon preferences. The deliberation should furthermore be characterised by communication that everyone can accept. (Dryzek, 2000, p. 68) • Inclusive: Everyone should be able to…show more content…
(Fraser, 1990, p. 64) There are two main points to derive from Frasers (along with other feminist theorists) criticism. First, social and cultural differences within societies have an impact on the possibility to engage in deliberation in the public sphere. Second, these differences result in not only inequality but also marginalisation. It is indeed difficult, especially when investigating empirical evidence, to argue for a public sphere, which is cleansed from any form of power relations and marginalisation (REFERENCE) – a so-called ‘neutral ground’. However, I will argue that the requirement of inclusiveness becomes less important if the end-goal of the deliberative process is not consensus-making, but rather to obtain meta-consensus. 2.4 Meta-consensus as the outcome of a deliberative process Although the more specific conceptualisation of meta-consensus is to be found in the work of Niemeyer and Dryzek (2007), the idea behind it has been around for a long time. According to Niemeyer and Dryzek (2007), deliberation “requires that individuals transcend private concerns and that they engage with competing views, taking them into account as a part of their evaluations” (Niemeyer and Dryzek, 2007, p. 500). This view upon deliberation is highly pluralistic and remains as the main requirement for an authentic deliberative process to happen. However, this has been formulated earlier by, for example, Hannah
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