Deep Democracy

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Jose Ramos:

"Deep democracy can be distinguished from participatory democracy and representative democracy. In representative democracy, as in Australia today, a person is legally obliged to vote. In most democracies, however, voting is not a legal obligation, it is sufficient for someone to simply exist and accept the powers that be. To the extent that powerful moneyed interests dictate political policy, even representative democracy is meaningless. In participatory democracy, such as that promoted through the pink revolution in Latin America, communities are given the opportunity to engage in deliberation over the governance and allocation of taxed resources. The Porto Alegre experiments in economic democracy are exemplary. The idea of deep democracy takes this one step further. It implies a deeper engagement for citizens, in which people are active in co-creating new democratic and commons oriented economic, cultural, and political institutions, organizations and social constructions. This is not meant to sideline or subsume other concepts or dimensions of democracy, but to add a layer to our conception of what it means. Deep democracy, as discussed by Mindell, is a holistic opening and convergence of the many talents, aspiration, values and needs held by a diversity of people in would (Mindell, 1992)."


  • Article: Deep democracy, peer-to-peer production and our common futures1. José M. Ramos. This article first appeared in the Finnish publication, Futura, 31. vuosikerta 4/2012

(ISSN 0785–5494), under the title: Syvädemokratia, vertaistuotanto ja yhteiset tulevaisuutemme