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Call For Papers: Doctoral And Postdoctoral Symposium, "New Participatory Spaces: Insights From State And Social Movement Practices", London, UK, 4-6 May 2017

Call For Papers For A Postgraduate And Postdoctoral Symposium
New Participatory Spaces
Insights From State And Social Movement Practices

CALL FOR PAPERS. Doctoral and postdoctoral symposium - New participatory spaces: Insights from state and social movement practices (PDF)

Host: Centre for the Study of Democracy, University of Westminster, London, UK
Date: 4th – 6th May 2017
Keynote speaker: Donatella della Porta, Cosmos, Scuola Normale Superiore, Italy
Other speakers: Graham Smith, University of Westminster; Dorothée de Nève, University of Giessen, Germany; Tina Olteanu, University of Giessen, Germany

We are witnessing the rise of new forms of citizen participation within and beyond state institutions resulting in a vivid sphere of political activity. This phenomenon is reflected in current academic research. On the one hand, the study of democratic innovations is rich in empirical findings on novel participatory formats all around the world, such as mini-publics and participatory budgeting, sponsored typically by state agencies. On the other hand, research on new social movements, citizens’ initiatives, and unconventional forms of participation such as flash mobs, online protest, and hacktivism, examines practices of collective action in open assemblies, online discussions, smart mobs etc.

However advanced the research in both fields, academic conceptualisations rarely consider both forms of participation in comparison. The notion of participatory spaces is an exception to this rule (Busse 2016, Cornwall 2004, Gaventa 2007). Here state and civil initiatives are conceptualised as invited spaces enabled by governments and claimed spaces generated by citizens. While differentiations are drawn, nevertheless these two broad forms of participation have family resemblances conceptually and practically and there are opportunities for meaningful comparative analysis.

The interdisciplinary symposium invites doctoral and postdoctoral researchers working on participatory spaces to come together to generate new and deeper understandings of these novel forms of organisation. Papers may focus on participatory spaces within and/or beyond state institutions and/or interrelations between these spaces. Theoretical and empirical, qualitative and quantitative contributions from all disciplines addressing, but not necessarily limited to, the following questions, are welcome.

Decision making

  • Which methods and modes of voice and decision making are employed in invited and claimed spaces? What are the implications of these different methods and modes?
  • How are communication and decision-making process organized? Facilitation, mediation, different phases, input from external experts?


  • How do invited and claimed spaces deal with social hierarchies and facilitate inclusion of marginalized groups like women, sexual and ethnic minorities, young, old, people with disabilities?
  • How do invited and claimed spaces address internal hierarchies between followers and leaders, experts and laypersons, moderators and participants?


  • Which tools and techniques do invited and claimed spaces employ to enable communication and decision making? In which spaces does communication take place?
  • How are online technologies employed? How do online and offline modes of communication interrelate?


  • Which modes of selection, representation and identity construction do invited and claimed spaces employ?
  • How are identities constructed in both physical and virtual space?

Please send an extended abstract of around one page in length no later than 17 February 2017 to H.Asenbaum@westminster.ac.uk and address any questions to this email.

For more information, see the website at


Call for Papers RC22, RC10 "Political Communication in Uncertain Times: Digital Technologies, Citizen Participation and Open Governance", Pamplona, Spain, 7-8 September 2017


Political Communication in Uncertain Times:
Digital Technologies, Citizen Participation and Open Governance

7th and 8th September 2017

We are pleased to announce the call for papers for the forthcoming International Conference of Political Communication organised jointly by the Research Committees for Political Communication (RC22) and Electronic Democracy (RC10) of the International Political Science Association (IPSA) with the CICOM 33rd, International Communication Conference, a yearly event organized by the School of Communication of the University of Navarra (Spain), under the title of “Political Communication in Uncertain Times: Digital Technologies, Citizen Participation and Open Governance”. The conference will be hosted by the University of Navarra in the city of Pamplona, Spain.

The unexpected British exit from the European Union, the migration crisis, the rise of Isis, conflicts in countries as Syria, the emergence of populism and unpredicted citizens’ reactions (such us the rejection of Colombia Peace Plan or the election of President Trump) are only some of the events that are taking place nowadays; they all have in common the uncertainty that brings with them and that characterize the current era.

The purpose of this conference is to consider the state of media and communications research in a political period marked by a variety of events that take place within an uncertain context. The conference theme focuses on the intersection between the role of political communication and digital technologies, both understood as potential pillars that may enhance democracy in a communication context characterised by continuous crises and their transnational consequences. 

Papers should make a contribution to the development of theoretical or empirical studies regarding digital political communication conducted by diverse actors that range from governments, political parties, media organisations, to non-governmental actors, citizens and social movements. Scholars, researchers and professionals are encouraged to submit paper proposals that either broadly or specifically deal with the aforementioned issues, be it by addressing national or comparative studies, theoretical or empirical ones.

We welcome submissions that cover one or more of the following questions:

  • New challenges for journalism and communication in a digital society: What changes have journalists and the media in general gone through? Do digital technologies change traditional concepts of media power? Do media and communication technologies support the formation of community?

  • Media coverage and journalist behaviour during moments of political turmoil: What role can media play at times of crisis? Which frames appeared repeatedly while media reported about an event? Is there any danger regarding the empowerment of certain voices while others are ignored?

  • Digital technology in election campaigns: How have election campaigns changed in styles, strategies, tools and with what impacts on voter engagement? What factors are shaping election outcomes in the digital age, and to what extent?

  • Relationship between representatives and citizens: How do governments and institutions deal with the opportunity and challenges introduced by digital technologies? Do they help to promote a real conversation between both sides? To what extent do they reduce the gap between them?

  • New parties in the political scene: Are new technologies promoting the emergence of populist parties? To what extent communication from a new party is different to those from traditional parties? Is there any visible pattern shared by new political actors?

  • Political actors and new technologies: To what extent are new technologies shaping political parties? Can we distinguish different practices and uses depending on the countries? Are those different practices somehow driven by any ideological perspective?

  • Digital Technology in public diplomacy: How digital media are shaping international political communication? How should international political actors adapt communication to the new digital audiences? Do digital media allow dialogue and interaction with international publics?

  • New voices, a multiplicity of agents in the public sphere: Can digital technologies transform the characteristics of the traditional public sphere? Is it possible to have an online public sphere? Will an online public sphere enhance democracy? Do media technologies constitute a new public sphere?

  • Mobilization and participation: Are digital technologies really able to empower citizens' political participation? Do they empower specific voices in detriment of others? To what extent social media play a relevant role on social movements? Can we talk about social media echo chambers in some results of recent political events?


For more information, see the website at 


Call for papers RC34, RC22, RC10 "Communication, Democracy and Digital Technology", Rovinj, Croatia, 2-3 October 2015

"Communication, Democracy and Digital Technology"
Hotel “Lone”, Rovinj, Croatia, 2 - 3 October 2015

The conference is organised by a committee formed from IPSA RC10 (Electronic Democracy), RC22 (Political Communication) and RC34 (Quality of Democracy). The conference is going to take place in cooperation with the Faculty of Political Science, University of Zagreb.

The conference theme focuses on the intersection between the work of three strands of political science, all of which ask questions of vital importance for the well-being of democracy globally. These questions revolve around measures, standards and analyses of the quality of democracy, the role of political communication in enhancing democracy and the extent that information and communication technology offers potential for a richer, interactive and co-created politics. Without imposing any normative ontologies onto the discussion we enquire how communicative acts, particularly but not exclusively those which take place using digital technologies, contribute positively or negatively to the quality of the democratic experience for citizens and to sustaining active democracies.

We therefore invite papers which contribute theoretically and empirically to this and relevant debates. Papers should have the concept of democracy (political participation, engagement and deliberation) at their heart and make explicit links to the contribution from theory and practice of digital political communication either by governments, political parties or candidates, media organisations, citizens, non-governmental actors or social movements. Papers focusing on cross-national comparative analyses are particularly welcome.

Selection will be based on the submission of abstracts which should contain the following information:
• Title
• Author and Affiliation
• Core theoretical premise of the paper
• Methodology and relevant information on data collection and analysis
• Key findings or questions that analysis will address if ongoing research
Abstracts should not be longer than 500 words.
Abstracts should be emailed to ipsa2015@fpzg.hr and must be received by 20 January 2015. Notifications of acceptance will be sent by 1 March 2015.

The conference will take place in Rovinj, one of the most picturesque towns in the Mediterranean (http://www.tzgrovinj.hr). For more information on paper submission, registration, location, travel and accommodation check http://www.fpzg.unizg.hr/en/ipsa_conference_croatia_2015.
If you have any questions about the conference please contact organising committee at ipsa2015@fpzg.hr or Dr Marijana Grbesa on behalf of the local partner, Faculty of Political Science, University of Zagreb at grbesa@fpzg.hr.

Event fees
Conference fees include participation, conference packs, coffee breaks and welcome event.
Standard fee €120.00
Student fee €80.00
Please note that all participants wishing to attend need to pay a conference fee.

Key dates and deadlines
20 January 2015 Submission deadline
1 March 2015 Notification of acceptance
1 June 2015 Booking and registration deadline
1 September 2015 Full paper submission

Organising committee: ipsa2015@fpzg.hr
Local organiser: grbesa@fpzg.hr


Panels of the RC10 at the next IPSA World Congress in Madrid

The 22nd World Congress of the IPSA will take place in Madrid (Spain) from 8 to 12 July 2012. You will find below the 8 panels organized by the RC 10 on Electronic Democracy.

Panels in RC 10: Electronic Democracy

Chair RC 10 Norbert Kersting (Uni. Muenster) norbert.kersting@uni-muenster.de
Co-chair RC 10: Stephanie Wojcik (Univ. Paris-Est Creteil) stephanie.wojcik@u-pec.fr

1. E-democracy and deliberation: Government and Parliament
Convenor: Prof. Norbert Kersting
Chair: Dr. Domagoj Bebić
Co-Chair: Dr. Raphael Kies
Discussant: Dr. Raphael Kies
Wednesday, July 11 - 11:00-12:45
School of Journalism / Facultad de Ciencas de la informacion - classroom 4

• Citizens deliberating in a government website: What difference does it make? - Azi Lev-On
• ePetition systems and political participation - Knud Boehle, Ulrich Riehm
• Facebook usage by city mayors in Central and Southeastern Europe - Domagoj Bebić, Milica Vuckovic
• Parliamentarian Blogs and Deliberative Democracy in Malaysia - Rosyidah Muhamad
• Political representation and the quality of democracy – the use of ICT by members of Brazilian parliament - Marcus Abilio Pereira, Flavio Cireno Fernandes
• The use of web 2.0 to improve political participation: how legislatures use the web to offer online political discussion - Santiago Giraldo Luque

2. E-democracy and deliberation: Political parties and Civil society
Convenor : Prof. Norbert Kersting
Chair: Dr. Raphael Kies
Co-Chair: Dr. Domagoj Bebić
Discussant: Dr. Domagoj Bebic
Wednesday, July 11 - 13:00-14:45
School of Journalism / Facultad de Ciencas de la informacion - classroom 4

• Debate the (French) Primary Round Online - Anaïs Théviot, Marino de Luca
• New Media and Democracy: political engagement through e-participatory experiences in education - Ursula Maier-Rabler, Stefan Huber
• Supporting young people's political participation through distributed discussion – lessons obtained from an EU pilot - Simone Kimpeler, Pille Pruulmann-Vengerfeldt, Ella Taylor-Smith, Ralf Lindner
• The effects of the Internet on political participation: the role of the Internet as a source of political information and a sphere for political discussion - Kakuko Miyata

3. e-Revolution and Pluralism in Countries of the 2011 "Arab Spring:" Egypt and Tunisia (joint panel RC10/RC16)
Convenor: Prof. Krzysztof Jasiewicz
Chair: Dr. Rainer Eisfeld
Co-Chair: Prof. Norbert Kersting
Discussants: Prof. Philip G. Cerny and Dr. Jason Abbott
Sunday, July 8 - 15:00-16:45
School of Pharmacy/Facultad de Farmacia - classroom 234

• Al Jazeera and Citizen Journalists: The Intersection of Broadcast and Social Networks in the Arab Spring - Muzammil Hussain
• Beyond ‘Renaissance’. The complex field of Islamism in Tunisia - Francesco Cavatorta
• Civil Society Players with Different Political Projects in Egypt’s Mubarak and Post-Mubarak Periods: Implications for Gender Politics and the Demands of Womens’ Rights Groups - Nicola Pratt
• Worker Mobilization and the Trade Union Movement in Egypt and Tunisia: A Comparative Analysis - Francoise Clement

4. Electronic Administration, Innovations in Government-Citizen Relations
Convenor: Dr. Stéphanie Wojcik
Chair: Dr. Hal Colebatch
Co-Chair: Dr. Stéphanie Wojcik
Discussant : Prof. Jill Tao

Wednesday, July 11 - 15:00-16:45
Medicine - Lain Entralgo

• Citizen privacy online – beyond the limits of government policymaking? - Scott Brenton
Cyberdemocracy in Brazil: ways to increase the representative democracy - Heloisa Bezerra, Vladimyr Jorge
• Designing the state: governments and citizen in the inherently digital era - Helen Margetts, Patrick Dunleavy, Jane Tinkler, Scott Hale
• E-government benchmarking in Brazil: indicators of e-gov in the greater ABC region - Jarbas Almeida
• Electronic Regimes - Mauro Santaniello, Francesco Amoretti

5. Electronic voting re-vitalized
Convenor: Dr. Josep M. Reniu Vilamala
Chair: Dr. Josep M. Reniu Vilamala
Co-Chair: Prof. Richard Niemi
Discussant: Prof. Alexander Trechsel
Monday, July 9 - 15:00-16:45
School of Journalism / Facultad de ciencas de la informacion - classroom 11

• Election Observation and Electronic Voting - Robert Krimmer
• Internet Learning, Internet Voting: Using ICT in Estonia - Thad Hall
• Internet voting in Norway 2011. Democratic and organisational experiences - Harald Baldersheim
• Public dispute on electronic voting in Poland – near or far future? - Arkadiusz Zukowski
• Testing e-participation : A case of e-voting system in Belgium - Nicolas Rossignol, Céline Parotte
• The Road to Internet Voting in Bosnia and Herzegovina - Vanja Malidžan

6. Open government
Convenor : Dr. Stéphanie Wojcik
Chair: Dr. Stéphanie Wojcik
Co-chair: Prof. Richard Engstrom
Discussant: Prof. Robert Smith
Wednesday, July 11 - 9:00-10:45
School of Journalism/Facultad de ciencas de la information - classroom 4

• Government 2.0: Problems and Prospect - Peter John Chen
• How to govern open data? Analysis of the modes of liberated data’s governance - Antoine Courmont
• Learning to be more open and proactive: lessons in open government - Mary Francoli
• Opendata as new commitment of governments : from injunction of transparency to coproduction of services - Sarah Labelle, Jean-Baptiste Le Corf
• Tracking the diffusion of open data policy in the EU - Francesca De Chiara

7. Scrutinizing mobilisation in networked politics
Convenor: Mr. Jorge Luis Salcedo Maldonado
Chair: Ms. Marta Cantijoch
Co-Chair: Dr. Mayo Fuster Morell
Discussants: Mr. Camilo Cristancho, Mr. Jorge Luis Salcedo Maldonado
Wednesday, July 11 - 15:00-16:45
School of Journalism/Facultad de ciencas de la information - classroom 4

• Cloud protesting. On dissent in times of social media - Stefania Milan
• Demonstrations as Hybrid Media Events: A Comparison of the Occupy Wall Street and Indignados Movements - Michael Jensen
• Empowerment in Organization and Communication - A study of Hong Kong's anti-express rail link movement - Jie Ying Wang
• Networked Politics in Action: The Advocacy of Net Neutrality in the United States - Burcu Baykurt
• Organizations and initiatives: different models of activism in a Facebook referendum campaign - Matteo Cernison

8. Social media revolution
Convenor: Dr. Jason Abbott
Chair: Dr. Jason Abbott
Monday, July 9 - 11:00-12:45
School of Pharmacy/Facultad de Farmacia - classroom 223

• A Campaign Perspective on Social Media Motivation and Use by Congressional Candidates - Jeff Gulati
• Democratizing Potential in Social Media: A Facebook Analysis - Callie Spencer, Jeff Rose
• ICTs and Democratisation in South Korea: Digital Citizens Pushing Analogue Politicians - Heike Hermanns
• Internet user and political trust in Europe - Norbert Kersting

RC10 Programme Madrid July 2012PROGRAMME IN PDF


Call for papers Conference “Direct and deliberative democracy. An intercontinental perspective"

Call for papers: Conference: “Direct and deliberative democracy. An intercontinental perspective”
Wednesday, March 9. - Saturday, March 12. 2011
Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Studies (STIAS) Stellenbosch, South Africa

Is there a crisis of democracy? Globally “electoral representative democracies” are highly criticized. Voter apathy and cynicism is growing. But also “unconventional” participation is facing a crisis. New social movements often seem to become violent meaningless protest. Are there any alternatives to the “brick or ballot“?

In this conference on the one hand new forms of "dialogical deliberative instruments" such as participatory budgeting, mini publics, future search conferences, ward committees etc. are discussed on the other hand “direct democratic instruments” such as referendums and initiatives will be analysed. Both democratic channels are seen as an innovation and addition for mainstream traditional democracies. Nowadays democratic innovation seems to be generated mostly in the global South. Brazil and other countries “export” participatory instruments into the old democracies in Europe and Northern America. New “dialogical participatory instruments” such as participatory budgeting were implemented firstly in developing countries in Porto Alegre, Brazil and spread worldwide. Democratic as well as non-democratic countries such as China implement deliberative dialogical instruments. In the last decades referendums and initiatives became en vogue in some Latin American countries. In Africa plebiscites are frequently used in nation building as well as in constitutional processes. In some European countries referendums seem to boom at the local level, where more municipalities implement referendums and initiatives.

There is no in-depth comparative evaluation focusing on these developments. Evaluation criteria encompass criteria such as openness, political control and responsiveness, rationality and transparency as well as effectiveness and efficiency. What are the functions of these political engagements? Are they implemented in planning, conflict resolution? What are intended as well as unintended results? What kind of actors is involved? What are the contexts and experiences as well as the pros and cons in the different continents? The core presentations should give a continental overview. Furthermore these presentations should analyse three to four countries in detail.

Finally the idea is to bridge these two fields of direct and deliberative democracy research. Can dialogical democratic instruments and instruments of direct democracy (Initiatives and Referendums) be combined? Is it useful to combine dialogical and direct democracy? If yes, can this be institutionalized? Are the new instruments one way to reinvigorate democracies or to democratize “non democracies” from below? Or is this “invited space” of direct and deliberative democracy more a rubber stamp factory? Can marginalized groups become meaningfully involved in political decision making?

Deadline for paper proposals and abstracts (200 words) is 15 January 2011. : Prof. Norbert Kersting (Stellenbosch University) (kersting@sun.ac.za)

Papers can focus on theory of deliberative and direct democracy and on a nexus between these two. Papers on effects of deliberative and direct democracy on social movements, civic education and empowerment as well as relevant country studies (India, Brazil etc.) are highly welcome.

The conference is co-organized by Prof Norbert Kersting, Willy Brandt Chair on Transformation and Regional Integration (DAAD)- Stellenbosch University and International Political Science Association (IPSA) Research Committee 5 "Comparative Studies on Local Government and Politics”