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  • Beyond expression: Realising public deliberation in an era of communicative plenty

    < Back Beyond expression: Realising public deliberation in an era of communicative plenty Selen Ercan, University of Canberra Tue 1 December 2015 11:00am - 12:00pm Fishbowl, Building 24, University of Canberra Abstract The paper develops the idea of ‘communicative plenty’ to describe the ever increasing proliferation of site of political communication (both online and offline) that emerge around controversial policy issues. We consider the implications of communicative plenty for realizing democracy understood in deliberative terms, as a reflective and non-coercive communication process. We identify various promises and pitfalls of communicative plenty, and discuss the conditions under which it might contribute not only to broadening, but also deepening of public conversations. To this end, we propose moving beyond expression and voice to focus on often ignored aspects of public communication, including reflection and listening. We argue that if accompanied by sufficient moments of reflection and listening, communicative plenty can offer a viable context for the realization of public deliberation at a systems level. We discuss the implications of this proposal for institutional design. About the speaker Dr Selen Ercan is a Research Fellow at the Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis, University of Canberra. Her bio and current research projects can be viewed here . Previous Next

  • Dannica Fleuss

    < Back Dannica Fleuss Associate About Dannica Fleuss' research deals with conceptualizations of democratic legitimacy, philosophy of science and deliberative democracy. She is also a postdoctoral research fellow and lecturer in political theory at Helmut Schmidt University (Hamburg).

  • Technologies of Humanitarianism: An Ethnographic Assessment of Communication Environments in Disaster Recovery and Humanitarian Intervention

    < Back Technologies of Humanitarianism: An Ethnographic Assessment of Communication Environments in Disaster Recovery and Humanitarian Intervention Investigator(s): Mirca Madianou, Nicole Curato, Jonathan Corpus Ong and Jayeel Cornelio Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council Urgency Grant (UK).

  • The institutionalization of deliberative democracy in European multi-level states: A comparative analysis of the experience of South Tyrol

    < Back The institutionalization of deliberative democracy in European multi-level states: A comparative analysis of the experience of South Tyrol Elisabeth Alber, Institute for Comparative Federalism at Eurac Research in South Tyrol Tue 9 October 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm The Dryzek Room, Building 22, University of Canberra Abstract The institutionalization of deliberative democracy is progressively experimented as a means to ameliorate decision-making processes at various levels of government, in Europe and worldwide. To what extent the recourse to ordinary citizens as co-creators properly meets the requirements of normative deliberative theory or, in the end, simply serves as an instrumental purpose, heavily depends on the context in which so-called democratic innovations take place. Empirical research shows that the increasing lack of trust in traditional channels of representative decision-making and the structural limits of direct democracy translate in what has been defined with the metaphor of the dam effect: the water tries to flow in alternative ways, and additional channels in decision-making processes have to be used so as not to waste too much water. Scholars of political and legal science, at different pace and with different foci, are increasingly paying attention to the proliferation of practices of deliberative democracy and looking for the development of sound criteria on how to define, classify and explain this phenomenon. Common to all attempts is the fact that practices of deliberative democracy go beyond the majoritarian rule of interest aggregation by voting and, in order to improve the quality of democracy itself, they propose tools that are centered on public reasoning among individuals (and groups). The institutionalization of such tools is increasingly discussed in academia, and among practitioners: both call – even though for different reasons – for an ever more articulated attention to the procedural design of deliberative processes and its impacts on both the organization of a deliberative process itself and the role of persons/groups, not only in the preparation and implementation phase of a deliberative process itself, but also when it comes to evaluating it (a phase which mostly is neglected). Moreover, when it comes to deliberative democracy in ethnically plural (divided) societies, the institutionalization of a deliberative democracy process faces additional challenges. Even though from a normative basis it can be argued that negotiations between groups (typical for consociational democracy arrangements) should be replaced by deliberation aiming at rendering any divided society more sustainable in the long run, in practice, the institutionalization of deliberative democracy does highlight (and eventually also increase) tensions, rather than reducing them. Therefore, particular attention has to be paid on the procedural aspects of processes of deliberative democracy. In this presentation, I firstly outline general principles of institutionalized deliberative democracy at subnational level in European federal and regional States. I present some examples and highlight how deliberative democracy processes came into being. Secondly, I briefly present an excursus on the geographical Alpine region and introduce South Tyrol and Trentino, two autonomous provinces that together form one out of five autonomous regions in Italy. Their autonomy arrangements developed over seven decades. While Trentino is predominantly Italian-speaking, South Tyrol is home to three language groups (German-, Italian- and Ladin-speakers, with German-speakers being the majority). The broad spectrum of complex regulations enshrined in South Tyrol’s autonomy statute (1972) establishes a model of consociational democracy that is characterized by cultural autonomy of the groups, a system of veto rights to defend each group’s vital interests, language parity between the groups, and ethnic proportionality ranging from the field of public employment to education and finances. Thirdly, my presentation aims at comparatively analyzing the two large-scaled deliberative processes that were undertaken from 2016-2018 in South Tyrol and Trentino. Ordinary citizens, organized civil society, stakeholders and politicians were asked to elaborate proposals for the amendment of the autonomous statute of the region Trentino-South Tyrol (which contains a few provisions applying to the regional level and two large distinct parts containing provisions applying to Trentino and South Tyrol). Both in its scope (revision of the basic law) and method (inclusiveness in territorial, intergenerational and socio-linguistic terms) the deliberative processes in Trentino and in South Tyrol are certainly a novum to the respective autonomous province, and in Italy as well as Europe. Especially in South Tyrol, the institutionalization of such a process challenged core principles of its autonomy. Using data from both processes, I examine key aspects of the institutionalization of each process by both referring to principles of normative deliberative theory and emerging literature on constitutional deliberative democracy/participatory constitution-making (a classification valid also for the two processes in Trentino and South Tyrol, because their basic law is of constitutional rank). About the speaker Elisabeth Alber is Senior Researcher, Leader of the Research Hub “Institutional Innovation and Participatory Democracy” and Academic Lead of the Eurac Federal Scholar in Residence Program at the Institute for Comparative Federalism at Eurac Research in South Tyrol, Italy (www.eurac.edu/sfere). She holds a PhD in Comparative Politics from the University of Innsbruck (Austria) and a degree in International Sciences and Diplomacy (Focus on Comparative Public Law) from the University of Turin (Italy). Her research interests are deliberative democracy and participatory constitution-making, comparative federalism and regionalism, decentralization and democratization processes (South-East Asia, especially Myanmar), ethno-linguistic minorities, territorial and personal autonomies. Her working languages are English, German and Italian. Elisabeth can be contacted at elisabeth.alber@eurac.edu and by phone at +39 0471 055 211 (office) or +39 339 32 98 604 (mobile). Her most recent publications in English are: (co-editor with F. Palermo) Federalism As Decision-Making: Changes in Structures, Procedures and Policies, Brill Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2015; (single authored peer-reviewed article) „South Tyrol’s Negotiated Autonomy“, in: Treatises and Documents - Journal for Ethnic Studies, 78, 2017, 41-58; (co-authored peer-reviewed article), “Autonomy Convention and Consulta: Deliberative Democracy in Subnational Minority Contexts“, in: ECMI et al. (eds.), European Yearbook of Minority Issues, Volume 16, Brill Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2018, 194-225. Previous Next

  • Refugee politics in the Middle East and the Governance of Syria's mass displacement

    < Back Refugee politics in the Middle East and the Governance of Syria's mass displacement Tamirace Fakhoury, Lebanese American University Tue 21 August 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm The Dryzek Room, Building 22, University of Canberra Abstract Syria’s neighbourhood currently hosts almost 6 million forcibly displaced from Syria. In this context, supranational actors have provided assistance to both refugee and host communities so as to help Syria’s neighbours cope with the refugee quandary. This seminar will review the overarching policy legacies characterizing refugee governance in the Middle East. It will then explore how state actors namely Lebanon and Jordan and key supranational institutional bodies such as the European Union (EU) and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) have collaborated but also clashed on the refugee issue, generating ‘governance dilemmas’. The conclusion will show the implications of these dilemmas for the global refugee regime and for the power dynamics in the transregional Mediterranean system. About the speaker Dr. Tamirace Fakhoury is an associate professor in Political Sciences and International Affairs in the Department of Social Sciences, and the associate director of the Institute of Social Justice and Conflict Resolution (ISJCR) . She has furthermore taught at the summer sessions at the University of California in Berkeley between 2012 and 2016. In Fall 2018, Fakhoury will be a visiting fellow at the Käte Hamburger Kolleg/ Centre for Global Cooperation Research where she will be carrying out a project on the European Union’s role in the multi-governance of displacement. Her core research and publication areas are: power sharing in divided societies, migration dynamics and governance, Arab states’ coping mechanisms with forced migration, and the role of immigrant communities and diasporas in political transitions. She is member of the core coordination team of the Global Migration Policy Associates in Geneva. Previous Next

  • Distinguished Professor John Dryzek has been elected to The British Academy

    < Back Distinguished Professor John Dryzek has been elected to The British Academy ​ ​ Congratulations to our own Distinguished Professor John Dryzek, who has been elected to the British Academy, an honour given to scholars who have attained distinction in the social sciences and humanities. John has considerable international standing as a scholar in the areas of political science, democratic theory and practice at all levels from the local to the global, political philosophy, environmental politics and climate governance. John is already a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia. Election to the British Academy underlines John’s influence and impact beyond Australia.

  • Beibei Tang

    < Back Beibei Tang Postdoctoral Research Fellow About Trained as a sociologist, Beibei Tan's research focuses on social and political change in reform-era China. She has participated in three interdisciplinary research projects in the fields of sociology, political science and human geography.

  • Digging deeper: The role of emotions in anti-coal seam gas mobilization

    < Back Digging deeper: The role of emotions in anti-coal seam gas mobilization Hedda Ransan-Cooper, Sonya Duus & Selen Ercan, University of Canberra Tue 23 May 2017 11:00am - 12:00pm The Dryzek Room, Building 22, University of Canberra Abstract In many countries, the expansion of coal seam gas (CSG) exploration and development has been met with grassroots resistance; the scale and depth of which has surprised even movement organizers. An often remarked feature of the movement’s success is the teaming up of farmers and environmental organizers, historically at odds with one another on other environmental issues. In this paper, we explore the role of emotions in building alliances, and mobilizing anti-CSG individuals and groups in Australia, especially the site of a proposed coal seam gas field in Narrabri, in northwest NSW. Using Margaret Wetherell’s affective-discourses approach and Charles Tilly’s concept of repertoires of contention as our conceptual springboard, we analyse interviews with various anti-CSG movement participants. The paper argues that affective practices play a significant role in explaining how the movement has sustained mobilization against CSG despite differences between movement participants. Emotions allow a new repertoire of contention that combines everyday practices associated with ‘doing’ community with confrontational direct action tactics favoured by several environmental groups. We discuss the implications of this development for the social movements literature in general and for the anti-CSG mobilization in Australia. This paper is part of a research project on 'Realising Democracy Amid Communicative Plenty: A Deliberative Systems Approach' funded by the Australian Research Council About the speakers Hedda Ransan-Cooper is a research fellow at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance located at the Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis, University of Canberra. Her research interests include the social dimension of energy change and the nexus between environmental change and human mobility. Her recent publications appeared in Global Environmental Change and Environmental Sociology. Sonya Duus is a research fellow at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance located at the Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis, University of Canberra. Sonya's research has focussed on explaning current fossil fuel dilemmas from a broad and historical perspective. She has published papers in Environmental Politics and Rural Society. Selen Ercan is a senior research fellow at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance located at the Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis, University of Canberra. She works in the area of deliberative democracy focusing particularly on the capacity of this approach in addressing irreconcilable value conflicts. Her recent publications appeared in International Political Science Review, Policy and Politics, Environmental Politics and Critical Policy Studies. Previous Next

  • WAIT, WHAT? DECOLONIZING DELIBERATIVE DEMOCRACY?

    < Back WAIT, WHAT? DECOLONIZING DELIBERATIVE DEMOCRACY? “Wait, what?” is a call to take a moment and to seriously consider what we mean by decolonizing deliberative democracy. About this event Deliberative democracy – as a set of norms, practices, and procedures for collective governance -- is an extension of liberalism and liberal democracy. More to the point, deliberative democracy is fundamentally rooted in intertwined logics of possessive individualism, positivism and universal truths, and settler colonialism. If theorists and practitioners of deliberative democracy are serious about decolonizing the field, this normative inheritance must be confronted. Deliberative democracy cannot be decolonized without a sustained and thoughtful interrogation of its ontological, epistemological, and ethical roots that continue to feed it. “Wait, what?” is a call to take a moment and to seriously consider what we mean by decolonizing deliberative democracy and whether this is even possible. Taking this moment is critical in ensuring that efforts to decolonize deliberative democracy do not in fact reinforce colonialism. Genevieve Fuji Johnson is a Yonsei settler of Japanese and Irish ancestry. Although proud of her family’s history of resilience, she is reckoning with their four generations of Indigenous dispossession. It is thus with gratitude and respect that she divides her time between the traditional and unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations and those of the Tla-o-qui-aht Nation. Dr. Johnson is a professor of Political Science at Simon Fraser University. Seminar series convenors Hans Asenbaum and Sahana Sehgal . Please register via Eventbrite . Previous Next

  • Learning to value nature? International organizations and the promotion of ecosystem services

    < Back Learning to value nature? International organizations and the promotion of ecosystem services Hayley Stevenson, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella Tue 11 December 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm The Dryzek Room, Building 22, University of Canberra Abstract The idea of valuing nature has become a core element of contemporary sustainable development and green economy agendas. This has been enabled by the widespread acceptance of the ‘ecosystems services’ concept, which tries to capture the value of the environment for human wellbeing. As the ecosystem services concept is embedded in development planning and economic policy-making, it is important to understand the opportunities it creates for environmental conservation and social development, and its inherent tensions and limitations. This requires a degree of reflexivity in policy-making to ensure that policies are informed by the historical lessons of ecosystem services experiments, the diverse knowledge of contemporary stakeholders, and self-critical awareness of uncertainty and multiple ontological perspectives. An international research team led by Hayley Stevenson and James Meadowcroft is studying the emergence and political uptake of this concept at international and national levels. In this presentation Hayley will share some initial findings about how nature valuation has been integrated into the work of international environmental and development agencies, and the patterns of reflexivity we observe. These findings also cast doubt on the political future of the ecosystem services concept. About the speaker Hayley Stevenson is Associate Professor in International Relations at the Universidad Torcuato Di Tella (Argentina), and Reader in Politics at the University of Sheffield (UK). She is the author of Institutionalizing Unsustainability, Democratizing Global Climate Governance (with John S. Dryzek), and Global Environmental Politics: Problems, Policy, and Practice. She is currently leading an international project with James Meadowcroft, “Ecosystem Services: Valuing Nature for Sustainable Development and a Green Economy”. Previous Next

  • Democratic transformations in earth system governance

    < Back Democratic transformations in earth system governance Jonathan Pickering, University of Canberra Tue 22 October 2019 The Dryzek Room, Building 22, University of Canberra Abstract Confidence in the ability of democracies to safeguard environmental sustainability has been shaken by failures to address climate change and biodiversity loss, along with a rise in anti-environmental populism across a range of countries. There is substantial (albeit contested) evidence that democracies perform better on environmental issues than non-democratic countries. And a resurgence in environmental activism, particularly among young people, offers renewed hope that democratic practices can coexist with progress towards sustainability. Nevertheless, major questions remain: are democracies capable of governing the rapid, wide-ranging economic and social transformations needed to address mounting risks to the Earth’s life-support systems? And what policy options are available to achieve sustainability transformations in ways that are democratically legitimate? This talk, based on a co-authored article in progress, aims to synthesise existing knowledge on the democratic implications of transformations towards sustainability and to chart new directions for research in this area. By linking ideas of sustainability transformations and democratic transformations together, we show how each can illuminate the other. About the speaker Jonathan Pickering is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance. His research focuses on democracy, reflexivity and justice in global environmental governance, and he is currently working on an Australian Research Council Laureate project on ‘Deliberative Worlds’ led by Professor John Dryzek. His research has been published in a range of journals including Climate Policy , Environmental Politics and Global Environmental Politics . He has co-authored with John Dryzek a book on The Politics of the Anthropocene (Oxford University Press, 2019) and with several colleagues a Cambridge Element on Deliberative Global Governance (2019). Previous Next

  • Digital Media and the Public Sphere Seminars this May

    < Back Digital Media and the Public Sphere Seminars this May ​ ​ This May, Eminent scholars Professor Axel Bruns and Professor John Dryzek will be featured in three seminars: Axel Bruns | The Filter in Our (?) Heads: Digital Media and Polarisation 2 May John Dryzek | Deliberative Democracy for Diabolical Times 9 May Both scholars - Panel Discussion | Future-Proofing the Public Sphere 16 May Seminars take place from 11:00am to 12:30pm 1. The Filter in Our (?) Heads: Digital Media and Polarisation – Professor Axel Bruns Climate change, Brexit, Trump, COVID, Ukraine: there is hardly a major topic in contemporary public debate online that does not attract heated discussion, entrenched partisanship, widespread misinformation, and conspiracy theorists. Rational, evidence-based contributions often fail to cut through while affective polarisation is prevalent and difficult to overcome. Professor Bruns argues that the simplistic view of these developments is that digital and social media has disrupted the traditional ‘public sphere’, enveloped us all in ‘echo chambers’ and ‘filter bubbles’ that contain our narrow ideologies, ushering in the post-truth age. But he points out that these explanations have been debunked as not acknowledging the full complexity of the present moment in public communication. Professor Axel Bruns is an ARC Laureate Fellow (2021-2026) and Professor at the Digital Media Research Centre at QUT. Chaired by Dr Katarina Esau Building 24 at the University of Canberra (in the research centres' meeting room) Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/7220752429 2. Deliberative Democracy for Diabolical Times – Professor John Dryzek Most people forget that, in spite of the advance of democracy in the 1990s and 2000s, most states and empires throughout history have been inhospitable to democracy. What’s new about our bad times for democracy is that they have seen new forms of public and political communication in what Professor Dryzek refers to as a diabolical soundscape . However, given the chance, citizens and ‘publics’ can avoid manipulation and polarization, reach well-reasoned positions, and join public conversations in deliberative systems that also involve the media, leaders, and activists. Deliberative democracy is a communication-centric approach and offers a chance to rethink democracy. What’s more, this can begin with the deliberative practices that all societies already possess. Professor John Dryzek was an ARC Laureate Fellow (2014-2020) and Professor at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance at the University of Canberra. Chaired by Dr Adele Webb Building 24 at the University of Canberra (in the research centres' meeting room) Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/7220752429 3. Future-Proofing the Public Sphere - Professor Axel Bruns and Professor John Dryzek The two previous seminars will culminate in an panel event on Tuesday 16 May in room 23B05 at the University of Canberra (and on Zoom). The two scholars, who hold vastly different perspectives on the challenges the public sphere faces in the age of digital communications , will then discuss their unique perspectives, and address questions from the audience. Chaired by Professor Selen A. Ercan Building 23, Room B05 at the University of Canberra (above Retro Cafe) Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/7220752429

  • The potential of deliberative democracy in like-minded settings

    < Back The potential of deliberative democracy in like-minded settings Kimmo Grönlund, Åbo Akademi University Tue 14 February 2017 11:00am - 12:00pm The Dryzek Room, Building 22, University of Canberra Abstract When groups consisting of like-minded participants discuss among themselves, their views tend to become more extreme. This phenomenon is known as group polarization. Cass Sunstein (2002, 2009) calls this discussion in like-minded groups ‘enclave deliberation’. Enclave deliberation has become increasingly common, especially in online communities, where it is easy to find like-minded contexts. In the long run, the tendency to discuss in enclaves may threaten democracy, since cross-cutting deliberation with different viewpoints and interests is needed in order to find common solutions for political conflicts. Finnish population-based experiments confirm that like-minded groups tend to become more extreme when they discuss freely. However, when like-minded groups discuss under specific deliberative norms, they do not become more extreme. This finding is relevant to both deliberative theory and policy-making. If the increased polarization tendencies in western democracies can be alleviated with certain rules (especially online), a less hostile, depolarized public sphere could be achieved. About the speaker Kimmo Grönlund is Professor of Political Science and Director of Research of the Social Science Research Institute at Åbo Akademi University in Finland. He is Convenor (together with André Bächtiger) of the Standing Group on Democratic Innovations at the ECPR and Director of the Finnish National Election Study Previous Next

  • Faculty Affiliates | delibdem

    Faculty Affiliates Jonathan Pickering Faculty Affiliate View Profile Jean-Paul Gagnon Faculty Affiliate View Profile

  • Hedda Ransan-Cooper

    < Back Hedda Ransan-Cooper Research Fellow About Hedda Ransan-Cooper's research interests include the human dimensions of global environmental change, the theory and practice of sustainable development and the intersections between human mobility and climate change.

  • Global Citizen Deliberation: Analysing a Deliberative Documentary

    < Back Global Citizen Deliberation: Analysing a Deliberative Documentary Investigator(s): John S. Dryzek, Simon Niemeyer, Nicole Curato Funded by Australian Research Council Linkage Project (AU$439,000), the Project Team includes: John S. Dryzek Simon Niemeyer Nicole Curato Global Citizen Deliberation: Analysing a Deliberative Documentary. The project aims to enact and film the world’s first truly global citizens’ deliberation, a global citizens’ assembly (GCA) on genome editing, and proceed to analyse the impact of the ‘deliberative documentary’ film on public understanding of complex, fast-evolving science and technology. It will investigate the cross-cultural capacity of citizens to deliberate complex value-laden issues, and so ascertain prospects for an informed global public response to challenges posed by genome editing. Research will test the effects of the deliberative documentary on viewers, examining benefits of communicating complex issues via the work of the GCA. Other benefits include improving public trust in governance and advancing the Australian film industry.

  • Medical Research Future Fund

    < Back Medical Research Future Fund Investigator(s): John Dryzek Funded through Genomic Health Futures Mission Grant (2020-2022) Genome Editing: Formulating an Australian Community Response (AU$420,000), Project Team includes: John Dryzek Project Description

  • Nivek Thompson

    < Back Nivek Thompson Associate About Nivek Thompson's research focuses on the impact of democratic innovations on the attitudes of political elites to the role of citizens in our democracy. She also runs the boutique consultancy, Deliberately Engaging, which recruits mini-publics to support deliberative processes and enhance democratic decision-making.

  • Democratizing Global Justice: Deliberating Global Goals

    < Back Democratizing Global Justice: Deliberating Global Goals Dryzek, J.S. and Tanasoca, A. 2021 , Cambridge University Press ​ Summary The tensions between democracy and justice have long preoccupied political theorists. Institutions that are procedurally democratic do not necessarily make substantively just decisions. Democratizing Global Justice shows that democracy and justice can be mutually reinforcing in global governance - a domain where both are conspicuously lacking - and indeed that global justice requires global democratization. This novel reconceptualization of the problematic relationship between global democracy and global justice emphasises the role of inclusive deliberative processes. These processes can empower the agents necessary to determine what justice should mean and how it should be implemented in any given context. Key agents include citizens and the global poor; and not just the states but also international organizations and advocacy groups active in global governance. The argument is informed by and applied to the decision process leading to adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals, and climate governance inasmuch as it takes on questions of climate justice. Read more Previous Next

  • Representation of future generations through international climate litigation: A new site for discursive representation

    < Back Representation of future generations through international climate litigation: A new site for discursive representation Peter Lawrence, University of Tasmania / Lukas Koehler, Munich School of philosophy Tue 30 August 2016 11:00am - 12:00pm The Dryzek Room, Building 22, University of Canberra Abstract While the recent Paris Agreement represents a step forward in terms of international action on climate change, grave doubts remain in terms of whether it will deliver the dramatic reduction in greenhouse gas emissions called for by scientists. These doubts relate to both the power of vested interests but also the chronic inability of democratic governments to take into account long-term interests. Such short-term thinking could be redressed by “discursive representation” (Dryzek and Niemeyer 2008) of discourses which reflect the interests of future generations. The paper explores the potential for such discursive representation in relation to international climate litigation (including the International Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights). Such litigation is potentially valuable as a vehicle for pressuring governments to take stronger action on climate change. But this approach gives rise to a series of difficult questions which our paper will address. How do we decide which discourses legitimately represent the interests of future generations in a context where such cases depend on NGOs articulating what they regard as future generations’ interests? Should courts inquire into the internal processes of such NGOs as a precondition for granting them standing? Can restrictive ‘standing provisions’ which limit who can bring claims before such tribunals be overcome? Is a judicial process inherently too limiting given the undemocratic nature of international courts with judges appointed by governments which are not necessarily democratic themselves? In spite of these challenges, the paper argues that the notion of discursive representation provides a convincing way of ensuring the democratic legitimacy of such litigation on the grounds that: ii) marginalised intergenerational justice discourses can be given greater prominence in decision-making processes and ii) judges can apply and develop concepts that may help to represent future generations through international legal concepts with intergenerational content (e.g. sustainable development, the non-discrimination and equal human rights principles). The paper is linked to ongoing work by the authors in relation to a project funded by the Germany-Australia DAAD research cooperation fund. About the speaker Peter Lawrence ( Peter.Lawrence@utas.edu.au ) is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Tasmania (UTAS) Law School, the author of Justice for Future Generations, Climate Change and International Law (2014) and Faculty Advisor of the University of Tasmania Law Review. Previously Peter worked for the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, including as First Secretary to the Australian Mission to the UN in Geneva. Lukas Koehler ( lukas.koehler@hfph.de ) is Director of the Centre for Environmental Ethics and Education of the Munich School of Philosophy, Germany. He is a joint author of Human Rights as a Normative Guideline for Climate Policy, in: Bos/Duwell (eds) Human Rights and Sustainability (2016 Routledge). Both Peter and Lukas are currently working together on a Germany-Australia (DAAD) research project on ‘Representation of future generations through international climate litigation’. Previous Next

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