What Role Can Citizens' Assemblies Play In Solving The Climate Crisis?


(MENAFN- Swissinfo) Deutsch (de) "öko-totalitarismus ist eine gefahr in bezug auf den klimawandel" (original)
  • Français (fr) de l'utilité des assemblées citoyennes dans la lutte pour le climat
  • عربي (ar) «الشمولية البيئية تهديدٌ لجهود مكافحة تغيّر المناخ»

    SWI swissinfo.ch: You will be on a panel at the aarau democracy daysexternal link on Thursday about“Less or more democracy in tackling climate change?”. Is there an argument for less democracy?

    Rikki Dean: In my opinion there is no good argument for less democracy, but there is a threat of eco-totalitarianism in relation to climate change. Even in democratic countries we often suspend normal democratic processes in an emergency situation. We saw this happen in the pandemic.

    China in particular provides a model for non-democratic governance that some people find attractive. So this question is a real one: Will we reduce our emissions within our democratic governance or will Europe shift in a more authoritarian direction in its politics? So thinking about how we can do climate policy better from a democratic perspective is important.


    Rikki Dean is Postdoctoral Fellow in the Democratic Innovations Research Unit at Goethe University Frankfurt. His research combines democratic theory, public administration theory and empirical social science to understand issues in participatory governance. His current work is focused on: developing a systemic conception of democracy; evaluating participatory governance projects; understanding the opportunities for democratic innovation represented by new online technologies; and analysing preferences for democratic governance. / Uwe Dettmar

    SWI: Do authoritarian countries handle climate change better?

    R.D.: No, definitely not. But our representative institutions are failing to deal with this problem. Parties still campaign on the basis that good government is about delivering economic growth and consumption can grow endlessly – even though we know this is destroying the environment. Representative politics has not faced up to the major political economic problem of the next few years: How do we create the democratic legitimacy to change our way of life so that it respects ecological limits?

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