Mann, C., Voß, J.-P., Amelung, N., Simons, A., Runge, T., Grabner, L. (2014), Challenging Futures of Citizens Panels. Critical Issues for Robust Forms of Public Participation. A Report Based on an Interactive, Anticipatory Assessment of the Dynamics of Governance Instruments, 26 April 2013. Berlin, Technische Universität (TU) Berlin
This report emerged from the workshop “Challenging futures of citizen panels”, held by the Innovation in Governance Research Group on April 26, 2013, at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Berlin, Germany.
The workshop was conceptualized and designed as a platform for a wide variety of actors involved in citizen panel design and implementation to identify and discuss issues and challenges for the future development of participatory methods. The workshop panel united actors with highly diverse ideas on and practical approaches to the development of citizen panels as an innovation in governance. These actors were associated with particular traditions in citizen panel design (indicated by labels such as “citizen jury”, “planning cell” or “consensus conference”) and many held different views of the nature and purpose of citizen involvement. Similar to approaches adopted by constructive technology assessment (CTA), the discussion at the workshop was triggered by scenarios depicting pathways to alternative futures.
Prior to the workshop, three scenarios were developed in which the design and use of citizen panels was dominated by a particular logic: commercial, political, and scientific (see Appendix). Based on empirical research regarding the historical dynamics of citizen panel development, each of the scenarios portrays a specific social and political entanglement of model-making. By bringing in various actors from the innovation networks surrounding citizen panels and beyond, organisers encouraged an exchange of different perspectives on the dynamics and future paths of citizen panel development, along with a number of ambivalences, and how actors can shape this process.