International Sortition Network Second Annual Meeting

[This is a repost from www.sortitionfoundation.org]

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From Wednesday January 16 to Friday January 18 the international network, Democracy R&D, whose first principle is the use of “sortition (random selection) to assemble representative groups of everyday people“, will be meeting for the second time, this year in Paris.

Three directors of the Sortition Foundation will be attending, along with members of around 21 organisations and several “guest participants”. This year sees the network growing, with the inclusion of Involve, DemSocthe RSA, DeliberaBrasil and Génération Nomination, alongside many of the participants from last year’s meeting in Madrid.

The meeting will also discuss the “Great National Debate” in France — a series of regional sortition assemblies — in response to the Gilet Jaunes protests.

It will also be very interesting to hear from the participants from Madrid, who were instrumental in that city becoming the first in modern Europe (and possibly the world?) to institute a sortition body (called “The Observatory”) alongside an elected assembly. The Observatory (which has 57 members, the same number as the elected city council), will have significant power to allocate funds to popular projects taken from Madrid’s online citizen proposal platform.

Sortition is finally moving in from the fringes, and the Sortition Foundation is excited to be a key participant in the Democracy R&D network, which is an integral part of that movement.

One Response

  1. The Observatory (which has 57 members, the same number as the elected city council), will have significant power to allocate funds to popular projects taken from Madrid’s online citizen proposal platform.

    Does “popular” mean that a proposal has passed a (high?) signature threshold? Given that a body of 57 voluntary participants cannot represent a population with any degree of descriptive fidelity, then their undermining of the power of elected representatives would be an antidemocratic move. The very fact that both bodies have exactly the same number of members indicates a fundamental misunderstanding of the notion of statistical representation.

    PS who are the “guest participants”?

    Like

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