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Examples include only allowing a mixture of the following: local citizens, educated citizens, those who had and or were serving in the military, wealth, land, religious status and level education. They were always male. Reasons for allowing only certain citizens to apply for or automatically be candidates for sortition include concerns over stability and well-rounded leadership as well as the maintenance of wealth, status and power. Burnheim's model of demarchy involves the partial or complete dissolution of government departments and bureaucracies, which are replaced by citizen's juries.

Demarchy as a concept does not necessitate such a radical step as integral to its purpose. When one considers how much time and effort politicians and bureaucracies expend in gaining or supporting political strength, the practice of demarchy may be quite efficient. Politicians in western governments spend a good deal of their time either influencing others or being influenced by others.

The purpose of this influence is that politicians and lobbyists can achieve their political goals. Because demarchy selects decision-makers randomly, the time and effort spent on politician machinations and manipulation is limited. In theory, therefore, demarchy could be a more efficient system of democracy than having elected officials. In his review of the history of sortition implemented in various degrees in Greece, Florence and during the French revolution in "The Political Potential of Sortition", Dowlen argues that any use of sortition, whether to elect leaders, or to form the body that elects leaders, has helped develop and strengthen inclusion and stability in democratic systems.

No modern nation has attempted to use demarchy as a primary system for political decision making, so it is difficult to assess problems of transition or shortcomings of the system. The Sortition article includes a more extensive discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of sortition in a wider range of applications. An example of demarchy is the use of a jury of peers in criminal cases. The jury is normally a body of randomly selected citizens who decide the guilty or not guilty verdict, which is a prime example of demarchy.

The concept of demarchy played an important role in Frederik Pohl's science fiction novel The Years of the City , which is set in a near-future New York City. In the novel, all government offices, including the President, Congress, and the Supreme Court, are filled by average citizens chosen using a form of selective service. Appointees are aided in their duties by android-like Digital Colleagues, extensive computer databases, and an overall goal of reducing bureaucracy and legislation rather than creating more.

The last of the book's five sections Gwenanda and the Supremes focuses on the story of a Supreme Court Justice. In Alastair Reynolds' Revelation Space series of novels the concept of demarchy has been used to flatten hierarchies. Here, in one of the human factions—the demarchists—everyone is theoretically equal in the realm of government and all major political related issues are voted upon by everyone via neural implant.

The "demarchy" in this society is actually more of a direct democracy. Joan D.

Vinge also uses demarchy in the sense of electronic direct democracy in her novel The Outcasts of Heaven Belt later incorporated into The Heaven Chronicles , perhaps the earliest use of the term. Clarke, the futuristic society on Thalassa is ruled by demarchy. With elections you're actually building the minority problem right in at every level, and lots more with it — parties, money, fame, graft, just for starters.

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What chance would that leave ordinary people, what chance would we have of being heard or of making a difference? Elections are completely undemocratic, they're downright antidemocratic. Everybody knows that! Sign In Don't have an account? Start a Wiki. Contents [ show ].

Categories :. Cancel Save. There were various levels of government of which at times positions were held for long term or taken by force, however most often there was a large scale and scope of citizen participation. The assembly consisted of up to all citizens perhaps a quarter of the population being male local citizens completing military service and perhaps other requirements.

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A 'lottery' electoral system could break our malaise

Administrators and some decision makers in various levels or functions were chosen by lot. At some point most Athenians in their demarchy had to fulfill some role, whether heading a daily meeting or taking part in administration. Some of these roles were not voluntary. Foreigners, women and most certainly slaves did not participate. Demarchy was practiced in some form in most areas, including many villages, for nearly a millennium.

Contemporary commentators remarked on the efficacy of the system, and foreigners were amazed that participative democracy could not only exist, but also function. This form of democracy occurred in a historic setting markedly different from modern democratic societies. Citizens were male, had performed military service, and were intimately and directly linked to the state. The territory and population were relatively small by modern standards no more than , , and the citizens were of a single culture. The extension of demarchy to large, diverse democratic societies would open questions of the scope of demarchic powers, the level of implementation, and the scope of the pool of eligible citizens.


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The Venetian Republic was well known for the demarchical aspects of its long standing and stable government. While other Maritime Republics withered under the strain of factionalism, Venice was renowned for its unity under the Doge. This unity allowed Venice to prosper as an economic city state superpower for several centuries while other nations came and went.

The demarchical mechanism that Venice employed involved the iterative process of electing a large council which was then reduced by lot. This was followed by that smaller council electing another large council which was again reduced by lot; the process continuing several more iterations.

By this means, the ruling families were able to diffuse the influence of competing special interests and reduce the possibility that a rival family would obtain a vice like grip on power. Ironically, this leveling of the playing field within the commune provided Venice with the opportunity to obtain its own monopolies in trade due to its stability and indivisibility. This immunity to factionalism gave it a resilience in defeat that would in the long run cause other cities, such as Genoa, to crumble.

Most modern democracies are made up of republics or parliaments. In both cases, citizens participate in the direct election of individuals to represent them. Ideally, most citizens would spend the time to adequately study party platforms. However, history shows that what politicians say does not always represent what they will do and if their actions will represent the important elements of their proposed agendas, as many citizens do not invest the time nor have the inclination to do so see rational ignorance. As a result, much time and money is devoted to political canvassing and advertising — where politicians promote themselves in much the same way as a commercial product.

The result of this is that people vote according to their impressions of the politician and party based upon political advertising, plus any other form of media that has influenced them. The problem with this is that people may not necessarily vote for the best candidate since they have not taken the time to examine whom to vote for.

Lotteries in Public Life: A Reader - Google книги

Demarchy eliminates an election process, saving time and money involved in self-promotion. In theory power would be given to a person who has not attempted to promote themselves in this manner and hopefully apply their experience, reason, ideals to represent citizens in the forming policy more fairly than in democracy.

As a theory, it has not been proven as it has yet to be acted out at any level, fully, openly, and democratically in known history. In contemporary society, burgeoning movements are taking shape with the aim of bringing demarchy to modern governments. An attractive feature of demarchy is that if political leaders were replaced on a regular basis with randomly selected citizens, it would reduce institutionalised corruption, party apathy and complacency as well as a history of party led entitlement, lack of choice and variety in political ideas in platforms.

It could be argued that replacing politicians in this way would solve such problems. As people would be randomly selected to act as representatives it would be less likely that the person involved would be part of a "party political machine". I also know that if all of us do X, rather than Y, it will make a difference.

And everyone else knows this, too. A thousand lefty celebrities have gone on TV and advocated for causes. O ne reason not to vote is that your vote — your one vote — is unlikely to make a difference to who wins the election. An extreme version of this thesis — which is obviously false — is that there is no difference between our Xs and our Ys. Much more plausible versions of this thesis are that there is not enough difference between our Xs and Ys, or that with respect to some important issues there is no difference between our Xs and Ys.

They are apathetic to our needs.

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They are only interested in servicing the needs of corporations. Is this true? Why would this be? The theory of modern representative democracy goes something like this. Each of us is fundamentally autonomous and of equal moral worth, so that we have a claim to self-government, self-rule, to the extent that such self-government is compatible with an equal right to self-government of others. This suggests something like direct democracy, in which each of us would have an equal say in determining whether we go to war, what policies and laws to adopt, what should be taxed and how much taxes should be, and so on.

But — we quickly realise — modern politics is very complex; it is a full-time job to be even modestly well-informed about political issues.

Sorted: Civic Lotteries and the Future of Public Participation

This suggests a move from direct democracy to representative democracy, where we would each have an equal vote in choosing that individual whom we think will best represent our interests and views. That person will act as our representative — and not as an elected tyrant — because to stay in power, she or he will have to be re-elected. The problem is that despite the elections, elected representatives are not actually accountable, not meaningfully accountable, to those over whom they govern.

There are logistical hurdles to keep poor, marginalised citizens from successfully registering to vote. Even in established democracies there are concerns about the openness and fairness of elections. There are huge financial barriers to running for office, and considerable advantages to incumbency. Corporate money and television advertising have an outsized influence. There are logistical hurdles to keep poor, marginalised citizens from successfully registering to vote, and gerrymandering reduces competition, considerably.

These difficulties all reduce how accountable our representatives are to us. Even if these problems were addressed, they would succeed only in making elections fair. But meaningful accountability requires not just open and fair elections; it also requires that we are capable of engaging in informed monitoring and evaluation of the decisions of our representatives.

And we are not capable of this.