The conception of the political demos, or the groups of people who participate in political decision-making, is a crucial aspect of any democratic society. Who is included and who is excluded from the demos has significant implications for the legitimacy of political decisions and the representation of different interests and perspectives within the political system. The talk introduces means to expand the demos and give ordinary citizens a voice in political decisionmaking by means of democratic innovations, assemblies comrpising residents and citizens coming together to discuss important issues and create solutions and recommendations for policymakers. Alexander Geisler is a PhD candidate in political science at the University of Geneva, Department for political science and international relations. He researches political support and the quality of democracy in contemporary societies, putting particular emphasis on trust between communities and political decisionmakers. In his doctoral dissertation, he investigates the design of hybrid democratic innovations combining popular votes and citizens’ assemblies to invigorate political participation in Switzerland. He will join the Institute of Political Science at the University of St. Gallen as postdoctoral researcher in the fall.
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