Events

06.02.2023
18:00 Uhr

Online

Diversity vs. representativeness - Who is involved in citizens' assemblies?

Location: Zoom video conferencing platform,

The purely random sortition reproduces social inequalities that are known from electoral research. What methods are there to use sortition to reach especially those people who otherwise never participate? What do we mean by diversity and inclusion?

An event in the series "Thinking space democracy: How to proceed with participation by sortition?" by Es geht LOS.

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06.02.2023
18:00 Uhr

Berlin

Effective climate action and citizen participation - is that even possible?

Location: House of Democracy and Human Rights, Robert Havemann Hall, Greifswalder Str. 4, 10405 Berlin

The impact of the climate crisis on our social life is becoming more and more noticeable. It is clear that without far-reaching changes, for example in the energy, transport and mobility sectors, there is no chance of achieving the 1.5 degree target.

But how do we actually combine effective climate protection and democratic decisions? How do we manage to adopt climate protection measures quickly, but without losing people along the way? Can our democracy do that? And if so, how?

Democracy International wants to talk about exactly that at the event: Effective climate action and citizen participation - is that possible at all? Concrete examples from Germany and Europe will be used to show and discuss the interplay between climate protection and democratic participation. The participants will also talk about the Climate Assembly in Berlin, whose proposals have been discussed and largely adopted by the Berlin Senate: Where do we stand, what have we achieved and where do we go from here?

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07.02.2023
18:30 Uhr

Moers

Citizens' assemblies in practice - experiences from Aachen and Coesfeld

Location: SCI:Volksschule, Beratungs- und Begegnungshaus, Hanns-Albeck-Platz 2, 47441 Moers

In May 2022, the initiative "Citizens' Assembly for Moers" was founded. In many conversations with citizens, questions were repeatedly asked about how a citizens' assembly works in practice.

How are the participants selected, what does the  "sortition" mean? Who decides on the topics? What happens to the results and recommendations of the citizens' assembly? How much time does it take up and, last but not least, what does it all cost? Guests at this evening's event will be able to provide information on these and other questions.

Mayor Eliza Diekmann from Coesfeld - Coesfeld is involved in the "LOSLAND" project and held a randomly selected future council in 2022. The topic: What does it mean to live happily together in Coesfeld - and what do we need for this?

Gereon Hermens and Frank Sukkau, Initiative Citizens' Assembly for Aachen - In Aachen, the initiative was able to achieve that the city council decided to establish a permanent citizens' assembly.

Please register with Dieter Zisenis. E-mail: dieter.zisenis@ekir.de

10.02.2023
18:00 Uhr

Online

Network meeting of local citizens' assembly initiatives

Location: Zoom video conferencing platform,

In Germany, the number of local citizens' assemblies is growing, as are the initiatives to set them up. Activists of these initiatives meat monthly online to exchange experiences and ideas.

The main topic at the next networking meeting of local citizens' assembly initiatives in Germany on 10th February 2023 will be: Childrens' and Young People's Assemblies

In randomly selected citizens' assemblies, not only adults can look for solutions to political problems together. Children and young people have also already been able to participate in various mini publics, exchange ideas and develop ideas together. This event offers an overview of the procedures and practice of previous children's and young peoples' assemblies.

Please send your registrations to info@buergerrat.de

Overview: Local Citizens' Assemblies and Citizens' Assembly-Initiatives in Germany

15.02.2023
12:30 Uhr

Darmstadt

Workshop: Democratic innovations between simulation and transformation

Location: Institute for Political Science at the TU Darmstadt, Landwehrstr. 48-50A, 64293 Darmstadt

Sortition-based democratic innovations, especially citizens' assemblies, are put forward as an answer to various crises of democracy. Against the background of their popularity among the most diverse political camps and the controversial debates about their legitimacy, however, a critical look at their democratising potential is unavoidable.

On 15 and 16 February 2023, the Political Theory departments of the Universities of Darmstadt and Mainz will organise a joint workshop on "Democratic Innovations between Simulation and Transformation".

Find more information in the workshop programme

Please register by 31 January 2023 with Katharina Liesenberg, email

15.02.2023
17:30 Uhr

San Francisco (USA)

Citizens' Assemblies: Solving SF's Major Problems & Revitalizing Democracy

Location: Latino/Hispanic Community Room B, San Francisco Public Library, 100 Larkin St San Francisco, CA 94102, USA

San Francisco faces a daunting set of complex issues, including homelessness, public safety, housing, affordability, and more. Despite decades of effort, these issues aren't going anywhere, and it's become increasingly clear our usual methods of governance aren't up to the challenge.

Claudia Chwalisz, Founder of Democracy Next and previous lead of the democratic innovations team at the OECD, shares her wealth of experience researching, designing, and institutionalizing new democratic innovations across the world, including citizens assemblies. She’s spoken to major audiences including the UN and the Athens Democracy Forum, and played key roles in creating permanent citizens’ assemblies in Paris and Belgium.

In addition to Claudia's presentation, this event organized by The American Public Trust will give attendees an experiential taste of the collaborative and relational principles at the heart of citizens' assemblies.

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20.02.2023
18:00 Uhr

Online

Random selection + X

Location: Zoom video conferencing platform,

Sortition is often associated with citizens' assemblies. But in which institutions is lottery still suitable? How can sortition be a useful complement to other formats? And how can other interest groups be involved in addition to those drawn by lot?

An event in the series "Thinking space democracy: How to proceed with participation by sortition?" by Es geht LOS.

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28.02.2023
18:00 Uhr

Berlin

Hello Bundestag

Location: Robert Bosch Stiftung - Representative Office Berlin, Französische Str. 32, 10117 Berlin

Between every person in Germany and every decision in the Bundestag stand the MPs of the constituency. The constituency council rethinks this relationship: MPs invite 35-50 randomly selected people from the constituency and let them spend a day discussing a current political issue and developing solutions.

The vision of the association "Es geht LOS". Through constituency councils, there is a new closeness between elected MPs and the citizenry. MPs have a direct line to the people of their constituency. It is a matter of course that important federal policy issues are discussed with selected people in the constituency. When MPs raise their hands in the Bundestag, they not only know the interests of their party and lobbyists, but also always have a good picture of what moves the people in their constituency.

On 28 February 2023, "Es geht LOS" will launch the 2023 constituency councils with a kick-off event.

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06.03.2023
18:00 Uhr

Online

Citizens' assemblies: We make the issue the issue!

Location: Zoom video conferencing platform,

Too big, too small, too abstract, too little room for manoeuvre - there is a lot to consider when choosing topics for lottery participation processes. Where does deliberation through citizen consultation work particularly well and what criteria can help us choose the right topics?

An event in the Es geht LOS series "Thinking about democracy: How to proceed with lottery participation?"

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16.03.2023
19:00 Uhr

Lauterbach

Participatory democracy: The concept of randomly selected citizens' assemblies to shape policy for the common good

Location: VHS Lauterbach, Raum 18, Obergasse 44, 36341 Lauterbach

In recent times, there has been increasing talk of citizens' assemblies, which are drawn representatively from the population and then deliberate on given public problems at municipal, district, state or even federal level with the help of a professional moderator. They also take decisions on how to proceed with the matter.

This course deals with the procedure, special features, its strengths as well as experiences and possibilities of implementation.

Lecturer: Matthias Klarebach, Mehr Demokratie

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16.03.2023
19:00 Uhr

Rheda-Wiedenbrück

What is a citizens' assembly?

Location: VHS-Town House, Luise Hensel Hall, Kirchplatz 2, 33378 Rheda-Wiedenbrück

Randomly selected citizens' assemblies are on everyone's lips. Their promise: they represent a cross-section of the population and thus also bring those voices into the political debate that are otherwise willingly ignored. In Germany seven citizens' assemblies have already been held at the federal level. These assemblies meet for a limited period of time and then draw up recommendations on a specific topic, which they then present to politicians.

In North Rhine-Westphalia, too, there is already experience with sortition procedures, for example in Arnsberg, Bonn, Cologne, Düsseldorf, Coesfeld, Erkelenz, Gütersloh and Jülich. Citizens' assemblies have also been a topic in the Rheda-Wiedenbrück city council.

The lecture by sortition expert Thorsten Sterk from Mehr Demokratie will present the format of the citizens' assembly, its strengths and weaknesses as well as current practice. A subsequent lively discussion at this event of the VHS Reckenberg-Ems is expressly desired.

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17.03.2023
13:00 Uhr

Rehburg-Loccum

Transformational governance: What can participation really achieve?

Location: Evangelische Akademie Loccum, Münchehäger Str. 6, 31547 Rehburg-Loccum

Which approaches, models and formats not only bring about change, but also ultimately bring about sustainable transformation? What role can participatory processes play in this, especially in municipalities, given the size of the tasks (climate, digitalisation, security) and the finite nature of local resources? At this workshop conference from 17 - 19 March 2023, all participants can actively contribute and present their examples and methods for discussion.

A workshop led by citizens' assembly expert Thorsten Sterk (Mehr Demokratie) will focus on the transformative power of randomly selected climate assemblies.

Read more

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20.03.2023
18:00 Uhr

Online

Citizens' Assemblies: Participation & Conflict

Location: Zoom video conferencing platform,

Ireland has shown with citizens' assemblies on issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage that sortition-based processes are also suitable for addressing socially controversial issues. But what does it mean for process design when the issue is conflictual and tempers are running high? What adjustments are necessary to enable constructive processing?

An event in the Es geht LOS series "Thinking space democracy: How to proceed with participation by sortition?"

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22.03.2023
19:30 Uhr

Idstein

A citizens' jury for Idstein

Location: Kulturbahnhof, Am Güterbahnhof 2, 65510 Idstein

Everyone is talking about randomly selected citizens' assemblies. Their promise: they represent a cross-section of the population and thus also bring those voices into the political debate that are otherwise willingly ignored. Seven citizens' assemblies have already been held nationwide. These assemblies meet for a limited period of time and then draw up recommendations on a specific topic, which they then hand over to politicians.

In Hesse, too, there is already experience with sortition procedures, for example in Homberg (Efze), Frankfurt and Kassel.

In this event of the Unabhängige Liste Idstein, citizens' assembly expert Thorsten Sterk from Mehr Demokratie will present the format of the sortition-based citizens' assemblies, its strengths and weaknesses, as well as current practice. A subsequent, lively discussion about the future of mini publics also in Idstein is expressly desired.

30.03.2023
09:00 Uhr

Aarau (Switzerland)

Aarau Democracy Days: Climate Crisis and Democracy

Location: Culture and Congress Centre Aarau, Schlossplatz 9, 5000 Aarau, Switzerland

Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time. Only with joint efforts can humanity succeed in limiting global warming and shaping the consequences of climate change in such a way that large parts of the earth remain habitable.

What is needed to develop reasonable proposals for solutions and to legitimise them democratically? As part of the Aarau Democracy Days, a panel will address the question of whether we need less or more democracy for effective climate protection. How do the climate assemblies that have been implemented in some European countries work? What experiences have been made with similar citizens' assemblies in Switzerland? The panel will discuss these questions on the basis of current studies presented by their authors.

Read more: Aarau Democracy Days

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17.04.2023
18:00 Uhr

Online

Knowledge and experts in citizens' assemblies

Location: Zoom video conferencing platform,

In citizens' assemblies, information is provided at a low level so that the participants can understand and classify the issues. What is considered relevant knowledge and who is considered an expert? What differences exist in the acquisition of knowledge and how must knowledge be prepared so that it is accessible to all participants?

An event in the Es geht LOS series "Thinking about democracy: How to continue with solicited participation?"

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08.05.2023
18:00 Uhr

Online

Participation and social margins

Location: Zoom video conferencing platform,

Citizens' assemblies are often used as a means of combating social polarisation and "democracy fatigue". But where do these formats reach their limits? (How) do we also manage to involve those who represent anti-democratic attitudes? And is that our goal or (where) do we need a clear demarcation?

An event in the Es geht LOS series "Thinking space democracy: How to proceed with participation by sortition?"

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22.05.2023
18:00 Uhr

Online

Limits and desiderata: Change through deliberation?

Location: Zoom video conferencing platform,

Deliberation through citizen consultation on policy issues has a moderating effect on the attitudes of participants in deliberative processes such as citizens' assemblies. Nevertheless, the recommendations that emerge in such mini publics often go further than the objectives of governments. But the process takes time and the implementation of recommendations is not guaranteed.

Are citizens' assemblies the right tool to shape urgent social change? What is desirable change and do the implementers of participatory processes have their own "hidden agenda"?

An event in the Es geht LOS series "Thinking Democracy: How to proceed with solicited participation?"

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02.06.2023
10:00 Uhr

Berlin

Symposium: Visions of participation

Location: Berlin, Location follows

Citizens' assemblies, or sortition-based participation formats, are increasingly establishing themselves as a desirable and successful democratic innovation. The Bundestag will hold three national citizens' assemblies in this legislative period, and there are now a large number of such projects at municipal and state level.

With the series of events ""Thinking Democracy: How to Continue with Solicited Participation?", the association "Es geht LOS" took stock of the situation from January to May 2023: On 2 June 2023, the organisers will look back: What have we learned? Which insights can be integrated as standards into future work with sortition-based participation formats and how can these be embedded in the political system?

A look back at the lessons learned and develop visions and concrete steps for the future of sortition-based participation.

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16.06.2023
11:00 Uhr

Cologne

Citizen Participation Network

Location: Youth Hostel Cologne-Deutz, Siegesstr. 5, 50679 Cologne

The Citizen Participation Network celebrates its 12th birthday in 2023! Together, the members have launched various effective initiatives over the past years. Reason enough to look ahead. On 16 June 2023, the network meeting in Cologne will discuss and deliberate together on which new activities will be launched and how the previous initiatives can be further developed.

Further information will follow.

Read more: Citizen Participation Network

26.06.2023
14:00 Uhr

Rouen (France)

7th European Conference on Citizen Participation

Location: Parc des Expositions de Rouen, 46 Av. des Canadiens, 76120 Le Grand-Quevilly, France

The French city of Rouen will host the 7th European Conference on Citizen Participation in 2023. What participants can expect:

Monday 26 June, afternoon: the city offers visits and guided tours to discover the city, its actors and inspiring initiatives.

Tuesday 27 and Wednesday 28 June: Conference at the Parc des Expositions de Rouen. Two days of workshops, debates and new, innovative formats...

Tuesday 4 and Wednesday 5 July: The conference continues with several online seminars and digital workshops.

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