Participatory Democracy. Are we Involved
Democracy is based on people’s participation in the political life of their own communities. Participation can assume different forms and express itself in diverse manners: it can be direct, indirect or mediated in nature. History has shown very different ways of involvement and long phases of lacking involvement, varying in the course of time. The very idea of democracy has considerably changed, demonstrating an ample openness to adaptation and innovation. This capacity to adjust and improve is the essential characteristic of democracy. Today, the democratic form of government is universally accepted as superior over others. Here, it is important to remember that democracy describes more than a political system. In fact, it also represents social relationships, values and guarantees, equal opportunities for all citizens, the rule of law, civil liberties, protection of minorities etc. Within the sphere of this concept, the idea of participatory democracy acquires a new meaning today and it requires wider spaces. The evolution of participative interventions in the social and political space proposes fresh challenges. In this context, an increased consideration of youth elements is necessary. Institutions of and experiments with participatory democracy represent a relatively new phenomenon, and to understand its value for young people holds significance not only for the present but also for the future. Therefore, it is important to develop a better understanding of the history of participation in democratic traditions and theories. For an analysis of the potential of participatory democracy it is also necessary to consider the developments ongoing in communication technology and their influence on the future of participatory democracy.
Democracy: An Evolving Concept
The word democracy derives from the Greek δεμοκρτια, which is composed of δεμο (people) and κρατια (government). Democracy thus means ‘ruled by the...