E-consultation: evaluating appropriate technologies and processes for citizens' participation in public policy
Fagan, G. Honor and Newman, D.R. and McCusker, Paul and Murray, Michael (2006) E-consultation: evaluating appropriate technologies and processes for citizens' participation in public policy. E consultation research project..
This report sets out to explore the reality of consultation as a form of citizen participation in policy development in Ireland, North and South. It investigates processes of consultation, the only form of participation that is a legal requirement of policy making, with a view to assessing their value as supporting tools of citizen centric governance. In addition a key objective of the research was to support the development of citizen driven government by identifying how Information Communication Technologies could support, develop or deepen the participation of citizens in policy development through that same consultation requirement. In particular, it was hoped to identify e-consultation processes and technologies that are most appropriate to the needs of diverse local communities and to find the best ways to apply these to support citizen driven democracy. The research team is both interdisciplinary and action orientated. The authors come from diverse academic backgrounds such as sociology, political science, information management, community development and even marketing! However, they at least share in common a commitment to democratic experimentalism (Unger, ), which involves working with what we have on offer to enrich democratic institutional possibilities by finding and building the zone where there is overlap between the conditions of practical progress and the requirements of individual development, where whatever is proposed responds to the felt needs and aspirations of ordinary citizens.
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