Prof. Lin Kuoming will tell a tale of two villages

Posted on Jul, 17 2018

Prof. Lin Kuoming 林國明, Director of the Department of Sociology of National Taiwan University, who is staying at the ERCCT as Visiting Scholar until July 28th, will hold a public talk at the ERCCT on Monday, July 23rd at 6.15 p.m.:

 "A Tale of Two Villages: The Practice of Participatory Budgeting in Taiwan" 

Since 1994, the Taiwanese state has initiated community-building projects in the hope of nourishing bottom-up participation in local communities. These projects to some extent brought about changes in local organizations and the identities of communities. After twenty years of operation, however, these projects were generally regarded as not “participatory” enough. To deepen democratic participation, in 2015, the Taiwanese state introduced the practice of participatory budgeting (PB) in several communities, where residents gather to discuss and decide how to spend public money. I will examine how the PB projects guided by the ideas of deliberative democracy actually work in two villages with different trajectories of community-building. In contrast to Habermasian theories of deliberative democracy, I use these empirical cases to illustrate the points that the actual working of public deliberation are influenced by cultural categories, solidarity and social organizations in concrete conditions. Looking at the interaction level, my analysis will provide an understanding of how the Taiwanese state’s top-down efforts of democratizing society were conditioned by local peculiarities which previous state actions helped to shape. 

Venue is room no. 0.01 at Keplerstraße 2, 72074 Tübingen