Graphik: Bulletpoint Abstracts issue 1/2018 (English)

Peter Biegelbauer/ Sandro Kappeller: Co-Decide or Co-Create: Direct Democracy Versus Dialog-Oriented Procedures in Local Decision-Finding Processes

This article investigates, how citizens are invited to take part in local decision-finding processes in Austria. In order to find out, what type of options are being offered to citizens, we have analyzed six fiercely debated decision-finding processes on wind power projects in Lower Austria. We barely found elements of participatory or deliberative approaches and only one single direct democratic instrument – referendums without mandatory consequences. Decision-finding processes on the local level are therefore mainly directed toward co-decision, and not co-creation. Regularly, decision-makers do not want to develop wind power projects together with citizens, but rather mobilize acceptance for already made decisions.

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