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Science of Democracy

January 5, 2022

🦋 Is Chinese democracy democracy?

Sor-hoon Tan Sor-hoon Tan explores the challenge that ‘Chinese democracy’ represents for Jean-Paul Gagnon’s democracy ‘data mountain’ project. She argues that exploring the Chinese case helps us establish the wide-ranging parameters to the project. It also identifies the theoretical issues we must confront for the project to succeed Read more
December 20, 2021

🦋 The perpetual reinvention of democracy

Kyong-Min Son Jean-Paul Gagnon’s proposal to study democracy as a stable object obscures one of the most important aspects of democracy: its normative character. Kyong-Min Son argues that democracy’s ‘spirit’ animates its perpetual reinvention in defiance of all empirical forms Read more
December 16, 2021

🦋 Can you put food inside? Words are invitations, not containers

Christian Ewert Collecting democracy’s words is admirable, thinks Christian Ewert. Not because the collection will hold any meaning on its own, but because it invites us to share and learn Read more
December 13, 2021

🦋 How to measure democracy: A practitioner’s view

Alexander Hudson How we measure democracy matters, writes Alexander Hudson. For practitioners, measuring the component parts of democracy is just as important as using an integral concept of democracy Read more
December 8, 2021

🦋 Data mountains and usable concepts: a lesson from Francis Bacon

Sandra Leonie Field Scholars of democracy must look beyond received paradigms. With his democracy 'data mountain', Jean-Paul Gagnon is challenging us to do so. However, drawing on Francis Bacon's analogous project for natural science, Sandra Leonie Field wonders whether a database of adjectives is indeed the best method of reaching this goal Read more
November 29, 2021

🦋 To understand democracy we need democratic theory

Tom Theuns Tom Theuns argues Jean-Paul Gagnon’s ‘data mountain’ project cannot achieve its goals because of fundamental problems of over-inclusion and under-inclusion, problems that can only be solved by recourse to democratic theory. But that is not to say that the project is without value Read more
November 25, 2021

🦋 On different ways to intend democracy, and to study it

Andrea Felicetti Andrea Felicetti writes that Gagnon’s data mountain is not a guarantee against biases and partiality. In addition to words, we must pay attention to people, their customs and practices, to better grasp what democracy entails Read more
November 19, 2021

🦋 Democracy: not just what but also why

Martyn Hammersley Martyn Hammersley argues that, since there is no essence of democracy, clarification is always required when this word is used. And any assumption that what it refers to is always desirable must be questioned: in each context, we should ask ‘Why democracy?’ as well as ‘What is democracy?’ Read more

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Advancing Political Science
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