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Accepted Paper:

Democratic deliberation and technology: which is the answer, which is the question?  
Iñaki Goñi (University of Edinburgh)

Short abstract:

This paper presents a twofold conceptual exploration. On the one hand, I explore how technology is mobilised in the practice and theory of the field of Deliberative Democracy. On the other hand, I discuss the role that citizen participation has played in the field of Science and Technology Studies.

Long abstract:

Calls for democratising technology are pervasive in current technological discourse. Indeed, participating publics have been mobilised as a core normative aspiration in Science, and Technology Studies, driven by a critical examination of "expertise". In a sense, democratic deliberation became the knee-jerk response to the question of responsible technological governance, and science and technology communication. Calls for technifying democracy are ever more pervasive in deliberative democracy’s discourse. Many new digital tools (“civic technologies”) are shaping democratic practice while navigating a complex political economy. Moreover, Natural Language Processing and AI have provided novel alternatives for systematising large-scale participation, automated moderation and setting up participation. In a sense, emerging digital technologies became the knee-jerk response to the question of how to augment collective intelligence and reconnect deliberation to mass politics. In this paper, I explore the mutual shaping of (deliberative) democracy and technology (studies), highlighting that without careful consideration, both risk being reduced to superficial symbols in discourses inclined towards quick solutionism.

Traditional Open Panel P376
What are we missing, what do we take for granted? Disruption and reconfiguration of public participation in science and technology studies
  Session 1 Friday 19 July, 2024, -