Meyer-Resende: Citizen assemblies do not address the biggest problem in democracies

Michael Meyer-Resende writes in the EUobserver:

[M]any climate activists want to expand democracy. They are deeply frustrated with the insufficient response to the threat of global heating.

There is much talk that the old institutions of representative democracy are not good enough to meet the challenge. “Politicians simply can’t see past the next election,” says the group Extinction Rebellion. The role of citizens is reduced to voting once every four or five years. Or so the argument goes.

That is why one idea has gained much enthusiasm among climate activists: citizen assemblies.

In these assemblies, people who are drawn by lot from pre-defined groups that broadly represent society, hear from experts, discuss what should be done about climate change and adopt recommendations, or even decisions.
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