Craig Barnes: James Fishkin

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The framers of the Constitution of the US tried to create institutions of deliberation, places where reasoned and thoughtful debate could occur and where rationality might triumph. With the arrival of the mass media and the internet, however, something unexpected has occurred: instead of reasoned exchanges, our population has segregated itself into like minded and self-confirming cliques of opinion that have bred extremism and irrationality rather than rationality. Professor Fishkin has developed a remarkable response to this phenomenon, re-creating institutions of Deliberative Democracy and these he has pioneered all over the world from China to Ireland, from Rome to Denmark and widely within the United States. The principles and practice of this experiment to remake democracy are available in this program and at cdd.stanford.edu.

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