16: Direct democracy
The Workshop aims to examine Direct Democracy primarily as a phenomenon of the modern constitutional state, be it unitary or federal, from the point of view of the forms and extent “the government by the people” constitutes an institutional reality in the world of modern democratic states.
Under such a perspective, referendums and other forms of people’s participation in public affairs should be taken into consideration.
This core approach does not exclude others which might take into account the phenomena of direct democracy as an everyday social practice. In that sense, both institutionalized and non-institutionalized practice in state territories, and beyond (like a European citizens’ initiative, according to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, for instance), may be dealt with.
Of all possible approaches of Direct Democracy, one, at least, seems to be particularly interesting, as far as it concerns its impact on the functioning of political institutions of Representative Democracy. Direct Democracy may then be considered as a complement of or as an opponent to Representative Democracy.
These guidelines serve as main points of reference and not as an all-comprehensive frame. Also welcome are authors who seek to enrich the debate on Direct Democracy from other perspective.
Submission of Papers
Issues to be discussed by papers include the description and functioning of direct democracy in state institutions and, possibly, beyond, and social manifestations of direct democracy. A theoretical approach that helps clarify the meaning of contemporary direct democracy around the world will be appreciated.