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Mapping and Measuring DeliberationTowards a New Deliberative Quality$
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André Bächtiger and John Parkinson

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780199672196

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199672196.001.0001

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Dissecting the Micro-Deliberative Approach

Dissecting the Micro-Deliberative Approach

(p.45) 3 Dissecting the Micro-Deliberative Approach
Mapping and Measuring Deliberation

André Bächtiger

John Parkinson

Oxford University Press

Chapter three distils lessons about deliberation from two decades of standard, quantitative political science methods in two contexts: deliberative minipublics and parliaments. The discussion reveals that while such pioneering research has generated rich results about preference transformation and citizens’ capacities to engage in quite sophisticated deliberation, it has also tended to treat such venues as closed systems, isolated from their social and political contexts; to over-generalize from what are rare conditions. Related problems with research on parliaments are then discussed. The picture that emerges is highly ambiguous: the classic elements of deliberation turned out not to be a single phenomenon but several, which did not vary in the same direction; and there are trade-offs between deliberative and democratic standards. But there are also important methodological problems that, the chapter argues, means the results give less comfort to sceptics about the value of deliberation.

Keywords:   deliberation, minipublics, parliament, preferences, transformation, democracy, trade-off, methods

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