Scaling Up Deliberative Effects - Applying Lessons of Mini-Publics

Simon NIEMEYER, Julia Jennstål

Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookChapterpeer-review


The debate surrounding mini-publics has focused on top-down assessments about their use in the wider democratic system. This chapter inverts that analysis to explore how observation of mini-public deliberation informs possibilities for scaling up their deliberative effects—as opposed to their decisions. The effect involves in good part reversing the influences of strategic and manipulatory political discourse via discourse regulation and the activation of norms consistent with consistent with the “deliberative stance”. Scaling up the deliberativeness involves a form of mini-public trust, with a focus on the regulation of discourses by trusted peers, and deliberating citizens acting as exemplars of deliberative behaviour. To the extent that both practice and institutionalization exceed certain conditions there is scope for mini-publics to become engines for deliberative democratization.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Deliberative Democracy
EditorsAndre Bächtiger, John Dryzek, Jane Mansbridge, Mark Warren
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
PublisherOxford Univeristy Press
Number of pages20
ISBN (Print)9780198747369
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2018


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