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Digital tools to bridge the representation gap

Presented at the PSA Parl 2021 Annual conference
Panel 5, 10 March 2021

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Digital tools to bridge the representation gap

  1. 1. Digital tools to bridge the representation gap Dr. Fotis Fitsilis Head of Documentation and Supervision Scientific Service Hellenic Parliament Annual conference Panel 5, 10 March 2021
  2. 2. Content Layout ▪ Definition ▪ Framing the topic ▪ The ‘smart’ parliament approach ▪ Some (premature) conclusions 2
  3. 3. Representation gap ▪ Definition: ‘technology induced disruption of seamless link of trust between parliaments and citizens’ ▪ Not in the sense of ‘democratic representation’ ▪ Rather similar to ‘generation gap’ (only bigger) 3
  4. 4. Is there a new digital reality? ▪ Notion of ‘citizen engagement’ ▪ Advancement of digital communication ▪ Well studied since beginning of century see e.g. Norton, P. and Leston-Bandeira, C. ▪ So, is there anything new? 4
  5. 5. Digital realm Social media • Omnipresent • Omnidirectional Rise of algorithms • Weak regulatory environment • CambridgeAnalytica incident Legal informatics • New standards, tools and services 5
  6. 6. How to put parliaments into the equation The ‘smart’ parliament approach 6
  7. 7. Stakeholders MPs ▪ Adjust rapidly ▪ Links to electorate ▪ Individual differences ▪ Lots of success stories The institutions ▪ Late adopters ▪ Whom to inform? ▪ Individual differences ▪ Distinct successes (UK) 7
  8. 8. How to change this? Harvest the power of legal informatics tools & services ▪ Building inclusive digital platforms ▪ Re-link parliaments with citizens ▪ Proof-of-concept selection ▪ Citizen-centric solution design ▪ Use of standards & open software ▪ Mobile-first approach ▪ Use of emerging technologies 8
  9. 9. Examples: virtual worlds, e-deliberation & participatory legislation  Standartised  Machine-readable  Semantic web compatible  User-friendly  Inclusive  Safe 9
  10. 10. 10 Some conclusions ▪ ‘The future is now’ cliché holds ▪ Institutional adaptation of parliament ▪ Make up lost ground with emerging tech ▪ Semantic web compatible solutions ▪ User-centric (i.e. citizen-centric design)
  11. 11. Contact and disclaimer email: fitsilisf@parliament.gr web: https://fitsilis.gr The information and views set out in this presentation are only those of the author and do not reflect the official opinion of the Hellenic Parliament 11

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