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Blockseminar: Participedia


Blockseminar: Participedia

The seminar is only open to students of the UDE. The seminar will be held in English!

Course Description:
In recent decades, observers witnessed a fundamental and ongoing change of contemporary democracies in large parts of the world. The empirical model of representative, party based democracy including parliaments, governments, parties and a settled administration is heavily under pressure. Obviously, empirical democracies are coined by certain shortcomings, malaise and deficits like declining public support, party memberships and voters’ turnouts; such as rising distance between politicians and citizens. At the same time, a “participative revolution” is on the way, fostering the spreading of more and more democratic innovations and experiments, like mini publics and other structured forms of citizen participation, complementing representative democracies.

The international Participedia project ( seeks to meet these challenges with an internet-based research platform, which provides us with knowledge about these developments. Participedia addresses fundamental questions with regard to these rapid developments: We need to know (1) what kinds of processes exist and to whom they are distributed, and (2) what kinds of processes work best under what conditions and constraints.

In this course, we introduce students to key concepts and approaches in the study of recent developments in contemporary democracies. The seminar aims at developing a better understanding of developments of dialogue-based forms of citizen participation and its spreading all over the world. This will be done from a social sciences and political theory perspective. The additional goal of the seminar is to get in touch and work with the international internet- based platform Participedia. Participedia is an open-source, participatory knowledge tool that responds to a new global phenomenon. The main task in our class is to prepare a single case study that combines knowledge of democratic theory with democratic practice of structured forms of dialogue based participation.

Link to the seminar in the LSF of the UDE:

Project homepage:

Organised by:
Jan-Hendrik Kamlage
0201 - 7204-213

Dennis J.C. Arnold
0201 - 7204-156

Anna Mengede

Promoted by:
The Seminar is organised by the project „Participedia“ at the Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities (KWI) in cooperation with the Institute of Political Science of the University of Duisburg-Essen (UDE)

Press contact:
Miriam Wienhold & Helena Rose
Tel: 0201 - 72 04-152
Fax: 0201 - 72 04-159
E-Mail: pressestelle[at]

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