The challenges of the transforming world test the capacity of our democracies in terms of democratic participation, political trust, and societal consensus. Citizen participation and co-creation processes are critical to support representative democracy processes and improve the quality of political decisions.
New Horizon project INCITE-DEM aims at enhancing inclusive participation and civic engagement, while expanding democratic innovation and dynamic feedback mechanisms between citizens and institutional actors in representative democracies. Based on research, the project will experiment with inclusive design processes for democratic innovation in practice, by setting up so called democracy labs in 6 countries. Experiences and research will be translated into specific policy guidance and strategic policy roadmaps for a sustainable, inclusive, and innovative democracy in a world in transformation.
To achieve to this goal, INCITE-DEM will first produce a systematic historical review of participation and engagement in democratic life. In the next step, it will try to understand the key conditions for inclusive political participation and civic engagement in democratic life, based on a comparison of current trends in Europe and building on 15 case studies of participation and engagement. The project will then model the dynamics of trust, polarisation, and consensus-building and co-design into an agent-based policy tool for reflexive dialogue, which will implement 8 social simulations of the dynamics of trust building and polarisation/consensus for different policymaking contexts. In its core, the project will experiment with inclusive design processes for democratic innovation in practice, by setting up so called democracy labs as experimental generative (co-creation) spaces in 6 countries (Germany, Norway, Italy, Portugal, Spain, and Slovenia). Next, the project will evaluate democratic innovations in order to be able to develop specific policy guidance and strategic policy roadmaps for a sustainable, inclusive, and innovative democracy in a world in transformation. Finally, INCITE-DEM will showcase its results to a variety of relevant stakeholders, helping them to integrate project’s outcomes into their practices and work.
INCITE-DEM is implemented by 10 partners from 9 different countries. The consortium is led by Portuguese FCiências.ID – Associacão para a Investigacão e Desenvolvimento de Ciências, while other partners are University of Muenster (Germany), Norwegian University of Science and Technology (Norway), University of Groningen (Netherlands), University of Helsinki (Finland), Tallinn University (Estonia), Instituto de Ciências Sociais -University of Lisbon (Portugal), Asociacion Eco-Union (Spain), Focus Association for Sustainable Development (Slovenia) and Kyoto Club (Italy).
Project website: https://incite-dem.eu/
Project duration: 1. 3. 2023 – 28. 2. 2026
Contact: [email protected]
The project is funded by the European Union. The views and opinions expressed are the sole responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Commission..