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The introductory chapter provides an overview of the volume ‘European e-Democracy in Practice’. The focus of the volume is on the exploration of the conditions needed to realise the democratic potential of the broad scope of tools, instruments and procedures to strengthen the ties between established processes of representative democratic decision-making and its constituencies, with a particular view to political communication and decision-making at the European level. Part I of the book provides the outcome of a broad literature review covering the scholarly debate on the achievements and potentials of e-democracy and its relevance for policymaking on the EU level. Part II of the book presents 22 case studies on the use of e-participation tools at the local, national and European levels which were carried out to learn about best practices and major challenges and problems of e-participation in practice. Finally, Part III provides a systematic comparative analysis of the case studies, and based on this analysis and the findings of the literature review, options for improving e-participation at the EU-level are discussed.
For an account of the history of scholarly and political debate of a renewal of democracy, see Lindner et al. ( 2016b).
STOA ( www.europarl.europa.eu) is a panel of 15 members of the European Parliament with a mission to support the European Parliament in matters of foresight and assessment of technological developments and their societal effects and political implications. The authors would like to thank the members of the STOA Panel, as well as the scientific staff of the STOA Secretariat, for initializing and accompanying the underlying research project. It goes without saying that the arguments and opinions purported in this volume are solely those of the authors and do not reflect in any way official positions of the European Parliament.
Council of Europe. (2009). Recommendation CM/Rec(2009)1 of the Committee of Ministers to Member States on electronic democracy (e-democracy). Accessed 06.02.2019, from http://www.coe.int/t/dgap/democracy/Activities/GGIS/CAHDE/2009/RecCM2009_1_and_Accomp_Docs/Recommendation%20CM_Rec_2009_1E_FINAL_PDF.pdf.
EC – European Commission. (2005). The Commission’s contribution to the period of reflection and beyond: Plan-D for Democracy, Dialogue and Debate. Communication from the Commission to the Council, The European Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions, COM (2005) 494 final, Brussels.
ESS – European Social Survey. (2014). European Social Survey Round 7 Data. Data file edition 2.2. NSD - Norwegian Centre for Research Data, Norway – Data Archive and distributor of ESS data for ESS ERIC. doi: https://doi.org/10.21338/NSD-ESS7-2014.
Kersting, N. (Ed.). (2012). Electronic democracy. Opladen, Berlin, Toronto: Barbara Budrich Publishers.
Lindner, R., Aichholzer, G., & Hennen, L. (Eds.). (2016a). Electronic democracy in Europe. Prospects and challenges of e-publics, e-participation and e-voting. Cham: Springer.
Lindner, R., Aichholzer, G., & Hennen, L. (2016b). Electronic democracy in Europe: An introduction. In R. Lindner, G. Aichholzer, & L. Hennen (Eds.), Electronic democracy in Europe. Prospects and challenges of e-publics, e-participation and e-voting (Vol. 2016, pp. 1–20). Cham: Springer.
Rheingold, H. (1993). The virtual community: Homesteading on the electronic frontier. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.
UN. (2016). United Nations e-government survey 2016. Accessed 06.02.2019, from http://workspace.unpan.org/sites/Internet/Documents/UNPAN97453.pdf
van Dijk, J. A. G. M. (2012). Digital democracy: Vision and reality. In I. Snellen, M. Thaens, & W. van de Donk (Eds.), Public administration in the information age: Revisited (pp. 49–61). Amsterdam: IOS-Press.
Ira van Keulen
Rasmus Ø. Nielsen
- Chapter 1
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