The Future of Representative Democracy

The Future of Representative Democracy

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The Future of Representative Democracy poses important questions about representation, representative democracy and their future. Inspired by the last major investigation of the subject by Hanna Pitkin over four decades ago, this ambitious volume fills a major gap in the literature by examining the future of representative forms of democracy in terms of present-day trends and past theories of representative democracy. Aware of the pressing need for clarifying key concepts and institutional trends, the volume aims to break down barriers among disciplines and to establish an interdisciplinary dialogue among scholars. The contributors emphasise that representative democracy and its future is a subject of pressing scholarly concern and public importance. Paying close attention to the unfinished, two-centuries-old relationship between democracy and representation, this book offers a fresh perspective on current problems and dilemmas of representative democracy and the possible future development of new forms of democratic representation.
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Product details

  • Electronic book text | 322 pages
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 11 b/w illus. 5 tables
  • 9781139065818

Table of contents

Introduction: rethinking the future of representative democracy Sonia Alonso, John Keane and Wolfgang Merkel; 1. Representative democracy and its critics Nadia Urbinati; 2. Representative democracy and the populist temptation Klaus von Beyme; 3. The wider canvas: representation and democracy in state and society Michael Saward; 4. Performance and deficits of present-day representation Bernhard Wessels; 5. Do parliaments have a future? David Beetham; 6. Engendering representative democracy Drude Dahlerup; 7. Representative democracy and the multinational demos Sonia Alonso; 8. Diagnosing and designing democracy in Europe Philippe C. Schmitter; 9. Monitory democracy? John Keane; 10. Representing nature Robyn Eckersley; 11. Democracy and representation beyond the nation state Michael Zurn and Gregor Walter-Drop.
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Review quote

'A valuable collection of essays which succeeds in assessing the development of democracy by placing it in wider historical and theoretical context - enlightening, compelling and fascinating.' Frank Ankersmit, University of Groningen 'This work considers the nature and future of representative democracy, including its current ills and some remedies. The contributors agree that there is no 'crisis' of this most successful political form since World War II; yet they see 'something new' evolving that they try to grasp with a sense of guarded optimism.' Claus Offe, Hertie School of Governance
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About Wolfgang Merkel

Sonia Alonso is Senior Fellow at the Social Science Research Centre Berlin (WZB). John Keane is Professor of Politics at the University of Sydney and Research Professor at the Social Science Research Centre Berlin (WZB). Wolfgang Merkel is Director of the research unit 'Democracy: Structures, Performance, Challenges' at the Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB) and Professor of Political Science at the Humboldt-Universitat zu Berlin.
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