2021 Zurich

The 7th Swiss Summer School in Democracy in Studies on the topic “Frontiers of Democratic Innovations” will take place on Zoom with one session a day from June 15 to July 1, 2021. It is organized by Democracy Studies and the Department of Political Science at the University of Zurich.

Democratic innovations, i.e. institutions and practices that increase and deepen citizen participation in political decision-making, are proliferating across the world. Examples include mini-publics, e-democracy and digital participation, direct democracy, or participatory budgeting. Scientific interest for democratic innovations is prolific.

The Summer School is an ideal setting for doctoral students, advanced master students and postdocs in the social sciences and in related disciplines who would like to:

  • gain theoretical, empirical, and methodological know-how on democratic innovations in various contexts;
  • receive feedback on their own work from both experts and peers in their field of research;
  • and meet and exchange with international experts and peers working on similar topics.

This Summer School offers an intense programme on democratic innovations, focusing on hot topics and open questions in this field. Leading experts will teach lectures on the contribution of democratic innovation to human development, democracy in the digital public sphere, innovations in direct democracy, the contestable relationship between deliberation and democracy, as well as participatory budgeting in semi-democratic and authoritarian contexts.

Participants will have the opportunity to present their own work on this matter, and receive substantive feedback from the experts.

Finally, there will be exciting social events, possibilities for one-on-one discussions and networking.