Environmental governance, local consent and the changing politics of damsNepal’s energy sector is currently undergoing a dramatic transformation in the context of an unprecedented scale of investments in low carbon energy infrastructure development. In this seminar, I focus on the changing politics of resistance against mega dams in the Himalayan region, driven by anticipatory visions of a prosperous energy future that has been facilitated by the consolidation of the regional energy market. My analysis is set against a context of the emergence of a transnationally allied movement against mega dams in the 1990s, which dramatically altered the dynamics of dam construction at the global and local levels. I discuss new regulatory techniques, governance mechanisms and institutions, along with myriad other historical, political and cultural factors to show how in the contemporary ‘infrastructure moment’, a combination of material conditions and speculative visions created by the state and the market, in addition to historical–geographical contingencies, have introduced new complexities, which have diminished the collective power of anti-dam voices in the region. T?his seminar will be chaired by Wendy Conway-Lamb. About the speakerDr Udisha Saklani is a lecturer in Human Geography at the University of Monash, where she teaches corporate sustainability and sustainability measurement at the postgraduate level. She recently received her PhD in Geography from the University of Cambridge. Her doctoral project focused on the rise of new state and private sector actors, the shift in the nature of development finance, and the changing role of international organisations in driving a clean energy transition in the Himalayan region. Her research focuses on the institutional and political dimensions of water governance, energy transition and climate policy. Her past projects have explored environmental policy and regulation, public-private partnerships, environmental behaviour and transboundary water cooperation and conflict in South and Southeast Asia. Her work has been published in leading water and energy journals such as Environmental Science & Policy, Renewable Energy, Energy Policy, and Water Alternatives. This event is hybrid. Join us on Zoom or at Building 24, University of Canberra.
Evaluating the first Global Assembly on the Climate and Ecological Crisis The Global Assembly on the Climate and Ecological Emergency was a pioneering civil society-led initiative. It was the world’s first citizens’ assembly that brought together 100 randomly selected citizens from around the globe to deliberate on the topic: ‘how can humanity address the climate and ecological crisis in a fair and effective way?’ For 68 hours over 11 weeks, Assembly Members listened to expert evidence, exchanged their views in facilitated small group deliberations and plenary sessions, and developed the People’s Declaration for the Sustainable Future of Planet Earth, first disseminated at COP26 in Glasgow in 2021. The Assembly aimed to set an institutional precedent for bringing the voices of ordinary citizens to multilateral negotiations, a space where they are largely absent. The Evaluation Report examines the extent to which the Global Assembly upheld principles of good practice in the process design, deliberative experience, and impact. In this panel discussion, authors of the Evaluation Report will present their findings on key aspects that were evaluated: demographic diversity; the facilitation process; the range of discourses on climate change invoked during deliberations; issues of power and inequality; and the Global Assembly’s impact on global climate governance. Following these presentations, we will hear reflections from discussant Claire Mellier, one of the members of the Global Assembly’s Central Circle, before opening up for a Q&A discussion. The aim of the seminar is to prompt reflection on the possibilities of designing and implementing a citizens’ assembly at the global scale, and generate actionable insights for future global assemblies. The seminar will be chaired by Adele Webb. About the speakers Nicole Curato is Professor of Political Sociology at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance at the University of Canberra (Australia). She was the Chair of the Global Governance and Participation Advisory Committee of the Global Assembly and the lead author of this report. Wendy Conway-Lamb is a PhD Candidate at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance at the University of Canberra (Australia). Her research explores how those most affected by climate change could be better included in global climate governance. She contributed to the analysis of discourses in breakout group deliberations and the impact of the Global Assembly. Azucena Morán is a research associate at the Research Institute for Sustainability, Helmholtz Centre Potsdam (Germany). Her work explores deliberative and participatory responses to planetary challenges. She led the research on the role of facilitators in the Global Assembly and contributed in the analysis of qualitative data from the perspective of disadvantage and vulnerabilities. Melisa Ross is Postdoctoral Researcher at SOCIUM Research Center on Inequality and Social Policy at the University of Bremen (Germany). She acted as observer during the Global Assembly and contributed to the analysis of qualitative data from the perspective of disadvantage and vulnerabilities. Lucas Veloso is a PhD candidate in Political Science at The Federal University of Minas Gerais (Brazil). Theorize and research democratic innovations and socio-political vulnerabilities. He was a notetaker in the Global Assembly and contributed to the analysis of qualitative data from the perspective of disadvantage and vulnerabilities. Kari De Pryck is a lecturer at the Institute for environmental sciences at the University of Geneva (Switzerland). She works on global climate governance and scientific knowledge production. She led analysis on the impact of the Global Assembly and contributed to the analysis of discourses in breakout group deliberations. Stephen Elstub is a Reader in British Politics, Newcastle University (UK). He has research interests in participatory and deliberative democracy and the role democratic innovations can play in environmental governance. He led the research on the media coverage of the Global Assembly. Claire Mellier is a facilitator, process designer and researcher with interest in delivering participative processes which put citizens at the heart of decision making. She is knowledge and practice lead at Iswe Foundation. She was a co-initiator and organiser of the Global Assembly on the climate and ecological crisis for COP26.This event is online. Join us on Zoom.
Anti-Anthropocentric Democracy: Devices of Extra-Human Representation and ExpressionLucas Veloso will present the paper 'Anti-Anthropocentric Democracy: Devices of Extra-Human Representation and Expression' co-authored with Ângela Marques, published in 2023 in the Brazilian journal Teoria e Pesquisa. The paper considers practical and institutional possibilities of an 'anti-anthropocentric democracy', characterized by the constant effort to address decision-making biases that threaten extra-human existences. The authors start by examining the proposition's foundations that all sentient biological entities have an inalienable and politically relevant interest in preserving their existence. Based on that, they propose three devices that can promote extra-human representation, expression, and visibility: a) Political and epistemic alliance with non-Western populations, such as indigenous; b) Empowering and dissensual deliberative experiments that foster pragmatic compromises between different cosmologies; c) The use of imagery and audiovisual artifacts to minimize trans-ontological 'incommensurabilities' and increase the possibilities of being affected by radical otherness. This seminar will be chaired by Wendy Conway-Lamb. About the speaker Lucas Veloso is a Ph.D. candidate in Political Science in Brazil (PPGCP-UFMG) and member of the research group on democracy and justice Margem. He researches democratic innovations, deliberative democracy, and socio-political vulnerabilities, and takes part in the team that builds Brazil's first citizen assembly on gene editing. His latest publications have addressed the following topics: a) social and political theory and epistemology; b) vulnerabilities in citizen participation and digital democracy; c) climate emergency, technology, and other socio-technical controversies.
6TH DELIBERATIVE DEMOCRACY SUMMER SCHOOL7-9 February 2024Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance, University of CanberraWe live in a time of global challenges including the climate emergency, pandemics and populism. Deliberative democracy leads the way towards mending and transforming societies. It inspires us to listen to fellow citizens and to nature. Deliberative transformations build the path towards democratic and sustainable futures.The 6th Deliberative Democracy Summer School brings together postgraduate students and early career researchers with leading scholars in the field. It provides a unique opportunity to discuss emerging themes, empirical findings and methodological innovations in deliberative democracy research. Participants will have the opportunity to present their work on a wide range of topics including – but not limited to – deliberative systems, mini-publics, social movements, transnational deliberation, non-human deliberation and feminist and decolonial deliberation.Participation is free of charge. Limited financial support for overseas travel is available.Deadline for applications is 30 June 2023. SPEAKERSMelissa Williams | University of TorontoYves Sintomer | Paris 8 UniversityAndré Bächtiger | University of StuttgartCarolyn Hendriks | Australia National UniversityMarina Lindell | Åbo AkademiMaija Setälä | University of TurkuHans Asenbaum, Nicole Curato, John Dryzek, Selen A Ercan, Jordan McSwiney, Simon Niemeyer, and Adele Webb | University of Canberra