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Idea(l)s on e-democracy and direct online citizenship

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The idea of electronic democracy implies a form of democracy which would develop as the result of the implementation of new communication technologies within existing democratic processes. Ideas of electronic democracy are not always accompanied by positive associations, but come also with apprehension of the probable dangers for existing democratic processes. This paper addresses the question of technological democratization through two interrelated steps. First, it focuses on the history of e-democracy and its implementation in different models of democracy. Then, in the second part, it reveals the main proponents of e-democracy as an idea that could transform the existing representative democratic system. Since many obstacles, that are not only technologically driven, the text here extracts the critique of such intentions and beliefs. However, communication technologies seem to be effective tools for citizens to select governors and participate in the formation of laws and policies. By enabling immediate insight into governmental work and into decisions made by other political institutions, an informed electoral body can be formed. In this context, the last section presents a new Slovenian governmental tool which can be understood as an effective bridge between different paradigms on e-democracy.

Affiliations: 1: Associate Professor, Department for Communication and Media Studies


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