Digital democracy: don’t engage for engagement’s sake

Digital democracy: don’t engage for engagement’s sake

Last month NESTA published a paper called Digital Democracy: The tools for transforming political engagement. It’s a comprehensive and well written piece of work and we are glad we had the opportunity to contribute to it. Members of our team in Scotland have been delivering support, guidance and learning about digital engagement to governments for many years and we are glad issues from our front line experiences are highlighted in NESTA’s paper. Digital Democracy includes interviews, research and case studies and it is summarised in 6 key themes. Every one of the 6…Read more
My first two months- a diary of Demsoc’s new Digital Engagement Officer

My first two months- a diary of Demsoc’s new Digital Engagement Officer

Hello, I'm Leah and I joined the Democratic Society’s Scottish team in early January as a Digital Engagement Officer to work on a digital integration project with a focus on participatory budgeting (PB). A main purpose of the role is to help local government and community groups think about how they can expand reach and have greater participation in their PB work by using online idea generation and voting alongside their traditional engagement methods. I have been working for years to promote better use of web and social media in government, both for…Read more

Inequality and democracy: what will the impact of digital be?

The Democratic Society has been asked to carry out a piece of research into inequality and democracy, and the impact of digital technologies upon these in the EU and beyond. As an output of this piece of work, we will be producing a report, providing a set of recommendations to the EU about further action and thinking. There are four broad themes we are exploring: Jobs, inequality and social protection - covering topics such robotization and automation of jobs, the impacts of an increased focus on the gig economy and employment laws and rules…Read more
How do we take back control?

How do we take back control?

  Digital democracy & democratic deficit in the EU The Democratic Society are working on a project to find out how people would like to communicate ideas directly to the institutions of the European Union. It's about citizens feeding in to policy-making and having a say more than just once every five years in the European elections. The UK's role in this is significant as Brexit highlighted a common perception that there is a lack of democracy, that people in Britain have ‘lost control’ over EU policy making. we will be hosting an online…Read more

How can online consultations be improved?

The Democratic Society and Snook are really excited to have been commissioned by the Government Digital Service to carry out a short piece of work exploring how the experience of online consultations, as run by Whitehall, can be improved. We will be writing a number of blog posts over the course of the project to share our thinking and invite comment, as we’re really keen to hear the views from a wide range of individuals who have been involved in designing, writing, or responding to, consultations. What are we doing? Over the next six…Read more

Beyond #BoatyMcBoatface: Digital Tools for Democracy

While various elections were taking place the other week another Democratic Battle was coming to an end: Rest In Peace RSS Boaty McBoatface – and all who will never sail in her. After much hype, laughter and excitement regarding the potential new name of Natural Environment Research Council’s (NERC) £200m polar research vessel the policy makers decided that it should be named after Sir David Attenborough. This doesn’t initially seem to be a controversial choice, but if we throw into the mix an open Name Our Ship Poll, harnessing the power of the…Read more