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Future Democracy - Alternative Models of Democracy

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Brockway Hall

25 Red Lion Square, London

London

WC1R 4RL

United Kingdom

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Join us in this meeting at Conway Hall where we look at the inadequacies of our democratic system and consider four alternatives to create a better democracy for us all.

This will be the first meeting in our series held jointly with the Conway Hall Ethical Society and that will look at different models of Future Democracy. It is clear that our existing system of representative democracy falls short of providing good government or adequately representing the will of the people. As a result there has been growing discontent and a lack of trust in both politics and politicians.

But if our existing system is no longer fit for purpose then what is the solution. What alternative is there that can form the basis for a more inclusive democracy.

Here we look at four alternative models of democracy and open the discussion up to those there so that we can not just identify what is wrong with the present system but how we can move forward to one restores our faith in the political process.

The four models that we will examine and discuss are.

• Wise Democracy is a way to facilitate the people of a large system—e.g. citizens of a community, members of an organization, citizens of a nation—to address and solve difficult issues together. Used at the national level, for instance, it’s an out-of-the-box way to transcend and overcome the usual partisan battle between entrenched positions.

This will be presented by Andy Paice whose work is to facilitate and catalyse new ways of working and living that are fit for the realities of the 21st century. He coaches people, offers mindfulness classes and runs workshops and trainings. He is a champion of deeper and more participatory forms of democracy.

• Sortition is the use of random selection to populate assemblies or fill political positions. An assembly that uses sortition would be composed of people just like you and me: it would be a representative random sample of people, making decisions in an informed, fair and deliberative setting.

This will be presented by Peter Cross of the Sorition Foundation. Peter’s interest in and frustration with the poor state of our “democratic” government was awakened when he came across the idea of sortition. He recently joined The Sortition Foundation which aims to promote and to institute sortition as a means of empowering citizens’ assemblies.

Liquid Democracy combines the advantages of Direct Democracy and Representative Democracy and creates a truly democratic voting system that empowers voters to either vote on issues directly, or to delegate ones voting power to a trusted party.

• Proportional Representation is the idea that seats in parliament should be allocated so that they are in proportion to the votes cast. Rather than the winner-take all approach of other systems, proportional representation ensures that votes carry equal weight.

This will be presented by Jessica Garland who is the Director of Policy and Research at the Electoral Reform Society. Jess is a former Senior Political Adviser, she has spent six years working in Parliament for Shadow Ministers and MPs. Jess is responsible for policy and research development for the Society. She has a Research Masters in Government, Policy and Politics and was formerly Chair of a youth-led volunteering charity.



Other Speakers to be added soon

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Brockway Hall

25 Red Lion Square, London

London

WC1R 4RL

United Kingdom

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