Back to overview

Deliberative Citizens, (Non)Deliberative Politicians: A Rejoinder

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Bächtiger André, Beste Simon,
Project Deliberative Reforms in the Political System
Show all

Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Daedalus
Volume (Issue) 146(3)
Page(s) 106 - 118
Title of proceedings Daedalus
DOI 10.1162/daed_a_00450


Are citizens or politicians (more) capable of deliberation, and when should they be willing to do so? In this essay, we first show that both politicians and citizens have the capacity to deliberate when institutions are appropriate. Yet high-quality deliberation sometimes collides with democratic principles and ideals. Therefore, we employ a “need-oriented” perspective, asking when and where citizens and the political workings of democracy need high-quality deliberation and when and where this is less the case. On this account, we propose a number of institutional interventions and reforms that may help boost deliberation in ways that both exploit its unique epistemic and ethical potential while simultaneously making it compatible with democratic principles and ideals.