31. Citizens must participate in governing

Since participating in decision making is everybody’s natural need, we have to devise new ways of a much deeper engagement of citizens in making political decisions. People care deeply about their communities and want their voice to be heard. How could we then improve the citizens’ engagement in a democratic process, extending beyond once every few years elections? Greeks, and some Italian states in the Renaissance period, had a solution. It was drafting representatives (men only, women were not included) by drawing a lot that why sometimes it was called allotment or a sortition. They swore an oath that they were not acting under bribes. In ancient Athenian democracy, sortition (drawing a lot) was mainly used as a method for appointing political officials and its use was regarded as a principal characteristic of a true democracy. The logic behind that system of electing political representatives originates from the idea that “power corrupts.” That’s the main reason why sortition was initially used. To some extend that also justifies, apart from other reasons, that citizens must participate in making decisions that effect them throughout the term of teh parliament, and not just during the elections.

The initial position of the participants debating this issue can be found in this Report made on 20/5/2021. Click on Participants (bucketized) and Group outline to see how the participants were split into two Groups, the larger one with a minimum 60% agreeing with the specified proposals.