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Blended Democracy

Democratic innovation at the dawn of the twenties

Online roundtable

Wednesday, 19 May 2021
1.30 p.m. – 2.30 p.m. (CET)
The seminar will be held on Google Meet
Classe di scienze politico-sociali
  • Donatella Della Porta (Scuola Normale Superiore)
  • Hans Asenbaum (University of Canberra)
  • Chiara Milan (Scuola Normale Superiore)
  • Paolo Spada (University of Southampton)

Moderator: Andrea Felicetti (Scuola Normale Superiore)

As is well known, democracy is a contested concept and an ideal we cannot fully attain. Yet, the fast and powerful change our societies are experiencing might be pushing democracy into new, unchartered territories. As mix of emerging ideas and practices alter democratic life as we know it, in this roundtable Donatella della Porta, Hans Asenbaum, Chiara Milan and Paolo Spada reflect on challenges and opportunities in a discussion moderated by Andrea Felicetti. Participants – currently working at or visiting Scuola Normale Superiore, Florence – will explore the idea that democracy might (or might not) be entering in blended mode.

Blended here is taken to mean two things. First, blended means mixed. At a time when representative democracy is in crisis new forms of participation and deliberation are sprawling in the public and some of them might be making their way into institutions. What are the key changes occurring in democracies? Are democratic institutions and societies heading towards decline or renewal? Second, blended refers to mode of interacting where face to face is replaced by online interaction. We increasingly spend our lives online and this deeply affects politics. In what ways is the rise of the online destined to affect democracies? What aspects of democratic life might be doomed to disappear and what developments, instead, might consolidate? This roundtable aims to generate inspiring ideas to interpret the way in which democracy is changing with us.

On the platform Gmeet:

Please turn off your microphone and webcam during your GMeet participation