Representation and Renewal - 2012 APSA Annual Meeting & Exhibition

  • Conference Call
  • Representation is ubiquitous to modern politics. In democratic and non-democratic settings alike, power is delegated to—or appropriated by—some to act in the name of others. Yet relationships of representation often go awry and are always and everywhere subject to skepticism, disillusionment, and calls for fundamental reform. Despite periodic calls for new modes of direct participation in decision-making, however, representation is inseparable from politics on a mass scale. For the 2012 meetings, we ask political scientists to reconsider the normative ideals we attach to representation, the factors that impede the realization of those ideals in practice, and the potential for representative relationships --whether preserved, reformed, or radically overhauled—to translate citizens' collective aspirations into effective public initiatives. We issue this call with an eye on renewal—of cities, economies, institutions, and relationships between the governed and those who govern.

    For the 2012 meetings, we encourage APSA members to address foundational questions about representation. We call for research that asks what representative relationships can and cannot achieve, how they might be renewed, reformed, or retooled to achieve those ends, and under what contexts political goals might be best served through direct or participatory democracy rather than through the mediation of representatives. We encourage division heads to reflect on how the most innovative work in their subfields can inform debates around this theme, and we invite them to collaborate with us in designing panels and roundtable discussions that speak to issues highlighted by this theme. We also welcome creative efforts to promote work across subfields and divisions.

    APSA Division Calls and Chair Contact Information

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    Conference START 02.09.2012 END

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