Welcome to Activating Democracy – A Guide to Direct Democracy
In the Spotlight
Brexit refers to a popular vote deciding, against the elites, that Great Britain should leave the European Union. Was it a referendum? Was it a plebiscite? Does it matter? Who called it and why? Did it work? Was it a great exercise in democracy or an excess of democracy? Was it a rational decision?
The Big Picture
This essay analyzes the place of direct democracy in the world today that is facing a double crisis of capitalism and humanity. It explores the role and potential of direct democracy as an instrument of resistance and transformation. We need a new story and vision of humanity if humankind is to have a future.
How to democratize Europe? Can it be done within the existing institutional framework (Plan A) or is it necessary to turn to Plan B?
Click to read the German version of this blog entry
The typology is used to classify the existing popular vote procedures unequivocally into different types and formes based on their legal design. Without a typology confusion arises and it is not possible to compare the repertoire of popular vote procedures between different countries. [DE] [FI] [GR]
On this page you find stories about how direct democracy works in practice in different countries, on the local, national and European level. They show that the distinction between referendums, initiatives, and plebiscites is crucial for a proper understanding of direct democracy.
You can download (as PDF) these and other books on (direct) democracy. Among them are a Chinese, Finnish, and Polish version of the Guidebook to Direct Democracy. For the actual version of the typology on modern direct democracy please consult this website.