SOU 72 - Representative and participatory democracy: challenges and perspectives for the governance of sustainable cities and territories
PRESENTATION OF THE SESSION
Representative democracy seems to be running out of steam due to the practice of the actors. Among other causes, we can cite the lack of representativeness, the interests of elected officials do not necessarily coincide with those of their electors, the mode of election in the latter, in some countries, which does not militate in favour of real accountability and responsibility of elected authorities towards the citizens.
At the same time, forms of so-called participatory democracy are developing, under multiple modalities, which are more direct and which feed on the actors, territories and social legitimacies that are there. In some contexts, this form of democracy presents the risk, in decision-making, of giving too much weight to a particular voice of a category of citizens who only represent themselves (people in the neighbourhood, supporters of such an opinion, a group of users, consumers, etc.) or the risk of excessive concentration in corporate pressure groups. How to articulate representative democracy and participatory democracy will be one of the questions explored during the session.
The exchange session will provide an opportunity to discuss forms of democracy in order to measure their real scope and objective and long-term limits and define guidelines for governance that can support the transition to sustainable cities and territories