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Jiang_Min---Authoritarian Deliberation: Public Delieration in China


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Jiang_Min---Authoritarian Deliberation: Public Delieration in China

  1. Authoritarian Deliberation: Public Deliberation in China Min Jiang (Ph.D. Purdue) Assistant Professor Communication Studies UNC-Charlotte, Charlotte, NC 28269 E-mail:
  2. Deliberative Poll in Zeguo, 2005 <ul><li>“ The public is smart. Under the right conditions, it’s smart in China just like it’s smart in Britain or smart in Bulgaria.” </li></ul><ul><li>-- James Fishkin (2005) </li></ul>In Zeguo township, residents voice their opinions in Deliberative Poll plenary session. (Photo: Jeffrey Prescott)
  3. Key Questions <ul><li>Can public deliberation take place in less democratic countries? </li></ul><ul><li>Do countries have to be democratized first in order to achieve public deliberation? </li></ul><ul><li>If the pursuit of better policy making, civic and political participation is not limited to Western societies, in what ways can less democratic societies benefit from deliberative theories? </li></ul><ul><li>How can the deliberative experiences in other parts of the world inform and enrich the theories of public deliberation in the West? </li></ul>
  4. Overview <ul><li>Define public deliberation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Analytical and social aspects </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Authoritarian deliberation </li></ul><ul><li>US and Chinese public deliberation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Offline </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Online </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Conclusion </li></ul>
  5. Define Public Deliberation <ul><li>Gastil & Black (2008) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ When people deliberate, they carefully examine a problem and arrive at a well-reasoned solution after a period of inclusive, respectful consideration of diverse points of view” (p.2) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Analytical : problem-solution model (Dewey, 1910) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social : equality, rights, respect, emotions </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Types of public deliberation in the West </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Informal conversations, media & public opinion, government decision making, public meetings, elections, juries, communities </li></ul></ul>
  6. Public Deliberation Graph Media & Business Government Juries, Gov Decision Making Civil Society Informal Political Discussions, Communities Media & Public Opinion Election, Multilateral Deliberation Public Meetings
  7. Authoritarian Deliberation <ul><li>He (2006) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Top leaders are not elected </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deliberation under one-party domination </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Arguments and reasoning – communicative action – solve collective problems </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Types of public deliberation in China </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Informal conversations, media & public opinion, government decision making, public meetings, village elections, communities </li></ul></ul>
  8. Informal Conversations <ul><li>National Issues Forum </li></ul><ul><li>Public Forum Institute </li></ul><ul><li>Huaxia Zhiqing Net </li></ul><ul><li>Xici Hutong Net </li></ul>
  9. Media and Public Opinion 1 <ul><li>Indymedia </li></ul><ul><li>Ourmedia </li></ul><ul><li>Strengthening the Nation Forum </li></ul><ul><li>Hunan Red Net </li></ul>
  10. Media and Public Opinion 2 – Chinese Blogs <ul><li>Douban 9 o’clock </li></ul><ul><li>Antiwave </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t Think </li></ul><ul><li>Antiwave YouTube Interview </li></ul>
  11. Government Decision Making <ul><li>U.S. </li></ul><ul><li>Congressional discourse </li></ul><ul><li>Court decision making </li></ul><ul><li>China - Blogs </li></ul><ul><li>National People’s Congress (NPC) </li></ul><ul><li>Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference </li></ul>
  12. Public Meetings <ul><li>America Speaks </li></ul><ul><li>21 st Century Town Hall Meetings </li></ul><ul><li>Deliberative Opinion Polls (Fishkin) </li></ul><ul><li>Politicopia Utah </li></ul><ul><li>China </li></ul><ul><li>Local deliberative institution (He, 2005) </li></ul><ul><li>Citizen evaluation meeting </li></ul><ul><li>Beijing Legislative bill comments </li></ul>
  13. Observations <ul><li>Chinese civil society and media are dominated by government, and increasingly commercial influence </li></ul><ul><li>Chinese public deliberative institutions tend to be voluntary, dispersive, and less institutionalized </li></ul><ul><li>Deliberative goals: better policies, and more accountable government </li></ul><ul><li>Offline and online deliberative platforms and interactions </li></ul><ul><li>Institutional exchange of public deliberation between U.S. and China </li></ul>
  14. Conclusion <ul><li>Emerging empirical evidence of public deliberation in China </li></ul><ul><li>Public deliberation is a passage to increased political participation and civil liberties in China </li></ul><ul><li>Public deliberation to be nourished alongside other democratic institutions </li></ul><ul><li>Societal and institutional changes to employ a variety of strategies to facilitate citizens’ participation in local and national affairs </li></ul><ul><li>The project of public deliberation to broadened to account for complex realities </li></ul>