Democracy Rebooted: Participation for a digital age

WebRoots Democracy

By William Louch.

Representative democracies are in the midst of a crisis. The age of the party is over. Turnout at elections is declining across Europe with (almost) every passing election, whilst the disconnect between political parties and wider society is made increasingly apparent with every photograph tweeted by Emily Thornberry. As Peter Mair writes ‘the parties pursue a form of competition that is so lacking in meaning, that they no longer seem capable of sustaining democracy in its present form.’ The rise of populist politics confirms this trend.

In the last year an Italian stand-up comedian (yes, they do exist) has managed to secure 25% of the vote in a general election, UKIP have become the first political party apart from Labour and the Conservatives to win a national election in the UK in over 100 years and Podemos, a Spanish political party founded this year, managed to secure…

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