Highlights of the EDDY (European Digital DemcracY) conference in Rotterdam (9-11 april 2024)

Forging new connections and learning from academia about citizen participation methods at the EDDY (European Digital DemocracY) conference last week in Rotterdam!

💡We learned, for example, about the different voting methods that are currently prevalent in computer sciences, such as the so-called Equal Shares method which revolves around the idea of a more fair distribution of voting power. Really interesting! Thanks to Markus Brill, Evangelos Pournaras, Davide Grossi, Pelle Nelissen and others for sharing their work and perspectives.

✨ It was very interesting to see an international, part-academic part-civil society crowd exchange views and knowledge and learn from each other in different formats. We learned, among others, about the Klimarat, a large-scale citizen assembly in Austra, the digital democracy mission of the province of South-Holland and about grassroots digital democracy in Ukraine. Thank you to Andy Paice, Dmytro Khutkyy, Ivonne Jansen, Raoul Kramer, among many others, for sharing your experiences.

🧐 Of course better participation technology (or better voting methods) is only a tiny part of the answer to the political and democratic challenges of the current era. What about the hierarchical and capitalist forces that still drive the digital realm today? What about the authoritarian side of tech-savvy Smart Cities? What about alternative ideas like ‘grassroots digital democracy’? Thank you Ehud Shapiro, Olya K. and Azadeh Akbari for your critical voices.

💬 Last but not least our director Simon Strohmenger gave a thrilling presentation about the Consul Democracy project and some of lessons Consul cities are learning about how to organize meaningful citizen participation. (Meaningful = there is something at stake!)

Big thank you to the organizers Jan Maly, Arianna Novaro, Frederik van der putte. Looking forward to follow-ups with many of you and strenghthening the digital democracy landscape together.