‘Lottery’ system would improve access

A lottery system would help poorer children access better education

Collaborative research by the University of Cambridge, the University of Bristol and the Institute of Fiscal Studies has suggested that a lottery system of admissions could make the intake of Britain’s leading schools and universities fairer.

The research was based on the Millennium Cohort Study, which follows the lives of 19,000 children born in the United Kingdom in between 2000 and 2001.

You can read the whole article here:



Boyd Tonkin: We should fill at least some public offices by lottery

Commenter ee notes an article by Boyd Tonkin in The Independent in which Tonkin, after warming up to the issue of popular displeasure with the electoral system, writes:

Most of the sounder proposals to refresh faith in democracy invoke some kind of “deliberative” process. Informed citizens should, in this model, have the opportunity to take part in every link of the decision-making chain rather than simply issue a yes/no verdict at its finale. In practice, how might this noble notion work? Well, here’s one idea that has even less chance of rapid realisation than an 11 per cent pay hike for MPs. We should fill at least some public offices by lottery.

“Sortition”, or the allocation of civic duties by lot, has a distinguished history. If ancient Athens practised it to supply most rotating city offices, then everyone in modern Britain understands it – and almost all respect it. The jury system still commands near-universal consent. People know that jury service modifies the risks of pure “sortition”. It makes provision for reasonable refusal or deferment, for challenges on the grounds of competence or conduct, and above all for guidance from a corps of impartial professionals – in this case, judges. If qualified random selection allows us to send someone down (or not) for life, then why not to decide on speed bumps and swimming pools?
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Discussions of sortition in German?

Does anyone know of organizations, publications or websites that discuss sortitional selection of legislatures in German?

A good link on new ideas for ‘democracy’

Apologies if this has appeared before, but there is a very good article from a French site about new ideas for Democracy, including some we would recognise here


Criteria for a “good” legislative system?

I’d like to pose a question to everyone in this forum – what are your preferred criteria for a “good” legislative system?

Representation and Children

This is slightly off-topic, but there was a huge discussion earlier on this list on the enfranchisement of children. There’s a new paper out co-authored by Kleroterian Ethan Leib on the topic of representation and children. It’s entitled “Fiduciary Representation and Deliberative Engagement with Children,” it’s appearing in the Journal of Political Philosophy, and it can be found online here–



Do the Kleroterians need a logo of their own? If so, what the heck might it be? Please discuss.