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  1. Towards eParticipation in Democratic Decision Making Colin Fraser International Teledemocracy Centre Napier University

  2. 'Classical' eDemocracy Use of ICT to engage citizens, support democratic decision-making processes and (?strengthen representative democracy?) Principal mechanism is the internet accessed through an increasing variety of channels, including PCs, both in the home and in public locations, mobile phones ... democratic decision making processes can be (usefully) divided into two main categories: one addressing the electoral process, including e-voting the other addressing citizen participation in democratic decision-making

  3. eParticipation Use of ICT to broaden and deepen political participation by enabling citizens to connect with one another and with their elected representatives OECD Citizens as Partners reports identifies 3 key relationships Information: one way relationship where government produces and delivers information for citizens Consultation: two way relationship where citizens provide feedback from government. Government sets the agenda and manages the process. Active Participation: partnership with government in which citizens active engage in defining process and content of decision making

  4. eEngagement • How can ICT facilitate the three levels of participation? (OECD 2003) • Reaching a wider audience • Providing relevant information • Engaging with a wider audience • Supporting appropriate feedback

  5. Technologies for effective dialogue Video interview (pre-recorded) FAQ Blogs Video interview (streamed) Chat interview Argument Maps Discussion Boards Questionnaire Games Disseminating information Forming opinions Gathering opinions


  7. DEMO-net Objectives Problem: a lot of good work performed in the area of eDemocracy but much of this is fragmented Lessons often difficult to learn because of the disparate nature of much of the work Evaluation strategies not yet mature Proposed Answer: DemoNet (the eParticipation Network) establish a corpus of lessons-learnt to show what kind of projects have delivered what kind of results and thereby considered effective for eParticipation. integrate multidisciplinary research in eParticipation disseminate research amongst stakeholders

  8. Objectives will be achieved by Analyse existing eParticipation research across Europe Which academic domains do researchers who think they are doing eParticipation belong to? What tools and techniques are used to create instances of eParticipation and used to evaluate them? Co-operation between government, academia and industry to improve quality of research & understanding Developing the theoretical underpinnings of the research area of eParticipation – bringing together work in various different disciplines through focused workshops

  9. Research Objectives Establish a corpus of material of empirically based research and policy documents related to eParticipation Research knowledge architectures to support access to corpus Research interfaces to support evidence-based decision-making Investigate barriers to eParticipation across Europe Research discourse analysis techniques to explore agenda setting, and alliance building at different levels. Map of current & emergent eParticipation technological infrastructures eParticipation methods. Establish criteria for evaluation of future eParticipation initiatives in a systematic & standardised way Harmonise & align concepts, terminology & methods from academic disciplines. from the various non-academic stakeholders, eg European, national, regional and local governments

  10. Setting challenges Identify and respond to developing global research and innovation challenges in eParticipation Analyse the European eParticipation research landscape, comparing it with international developments Develop research agenda and roadmaps to govern future direction and future of network Put together research teams and thematic networks to respond to evolving challenges

  11. Joined eParticipation technical research Understand existing tools and technologies used for eParticipation Analyse the technical challenges of eParticipation Develop standards and ontologies for information structuring Utilise methods of Knowledge Management for large scale eParticipation

  12. Joined eParticipation socio-technical research Develop the theoretical basis for cross-disciplinary socio-technical research in eParticipation to introduce and implement eParticipation in different application areas - Establish ways to support internal relevance (quality of online discourse) and external relevance (way eParticipation outcomes are used by political actors) Support socio-technical theoretical basis of technical solutions and their implementation

  13. Research exchange programme Promotes cooperation between technical and socio-technical researchers, government specialists and industry specialists Aims to: create cross-disciplinary teams working on research and innovation projects develop funding opportunities for new projects stimulate wide discussion and dissemination of research results to develop and stabilise expert networks

  14. DEMO-net partner relationships DEMO-net Associated institutions DEMO-net partner institutions DEMO-net Affiliated Experts Regions R&D groups outside EU Industry R&D Industry Authorities DEMO-net:building the eParticipation community Eg: the EU-NSF networking at eGov

  15. DEMO-net will deliver Virtual centre of excellence in eParticipation research which will ensure: Research community that advances IST applicable to eParticipation & an environment that encourages collaboration Sustainable eParticipation research community Significant contribution to PhD development Critical exposure of researchers to pressing democratic problems Significant input to government policy development for citizen engagement both in individual EU countries and the EU as a whole

  16. Overall aims The DEMO-net project aims to to promote and develop technological and socio-technical excellence in the emerging field of e-Participation. build on the experience accumulated by leading European research organisations that have studied the underlying principles of e-Participation and actively worked with governments across Europe in applying and evaluating e-Participation

  17. Contacts Administrative Project Co-ordinator: Nanna Skovrup, The Digital North Denmark, Vesterbro 102, DK9000, Aalborg, Denmark.bEmail: Strategic Research Coordinator: Professor Ann Macintosh, International Teledemocracy Centre, Napier University, 10 Colinton Road, Edinburgh, EH10 5DT, UK. Email: Scientific Manager: Prof. Kim Viborg-Andersen, Department of Informatics, Copenhagen Business School, Howitzvej 60, DK - 2000 Frederiksberg, Copenhagen, Denmark. Email: