This book examines citizen engagement in contemporary democratic politics and the development of new participatory forms. Based on empirical information gathered from citizens, activists and organizations, it examines the changing face of democratic participation.
Advanced democracies are ‘plagued’ by the complex problem of basing political decisions on the active engagement of citizens and citizens’ organisations. Although the benefits of an active citizenry appear great, the reality is that most citizens positively embrace a relatively marginal role in organised politics. The conventional activist –citizens as active members engaged in voluntary associations and collective decision-making – seems to be replaced by passive supporters and donors or ephemeral or episodic democratic participators. This volume aims to address several issues at the core of this transformation: the rise of checkbook participation, the growing attractiveness of individualized forms of participation, and the increasing relevance of professional expertise.
Looking beyond the traditional single focus on participation or on organizations in isolation, the book innovatively examines the empirical link that can be established between actual developments in democratic participations and the organizational framework in European countries.
New Participatory Dimensions in Civil Society is essential reading for students and scholars of democracy, participation, civil society, politics and sociology.
1. Introduction: Democracy, Professionalization and Participation Jan W. van Deth and William A. Maloney Part 1: Professionalization and Democratic Politics 2. How to Domesticate Civil Society by Public-Private Partnerships: Evidence from German Local Health Policy Matthias Freise 3. Entrepreneurial Participation in International Local Politics: The Case of Marseille, European Capital of Culture for 2013 Nicolas Maisetti 4. New Issues, New Forms of Action? Climate Change and Environmental Activism in Britain Christopher Rootes 5. The Professionalization of EU’s Civil Society: A Conceptual Framework Sabine Saurugger 6. The Democratic Contribution of Professionalized Representation William A. Maloney 7. Professionalized Supply-Side Mobilization: Are Financial Contributors ‘Meaningful Participants’? Grant Jordan Part 2: Changing Democratic Engagement 8. New Modes of Participation and Norms of Citizenship Jan W. van Deth 9. A Remedy for Unequal Participation? How Welfare States Impact on Social and Political Engagement Isabelle Stadelmann-Steffen 10. Peripheral Participants: The Activation of the Politically Less Engaged in Advanced Democracies Eline A. de Rooij 11. Surrogates for the Underrepresented? Ideology and Participatory Inequality in Personal and Professional Political Action Tom W.G. van der Meer 12. The Stability of Individualized Collective Action: Results of a Panel Study among Belgian Late Adolescents Ellen Quintelier and Marc Hooghe 13. Youth Participation from the Top-Down: The Perspectives of Government and Community Sector Decision-Makers in Australia Ariadne Vromen 14. Conclusions: How Democratic is Professionalized and Individualized Political Action? Jan W. van Deth and William A. Maloney