“Can AI bring deliberative democracy to the masses?”

Paper by Hélène Landemore: “A core problem in deliberative democracy is the tension between two seemingly equally important conditions of democratic legitimacy: deliberation on the one hand and mass participation on the other. Might artificial intelligence help bring quality deliberation to the masses? The paper first examines the conundrum in deliberative democracy around the tradeoff between deliberation and mass participation by returning to the seminal debate between Joshua Cohen and Jürgen Habermas about the proper model of deliberative democracy. It then turns to an analysis of the 2019 French Great National Debate, a low-tech attempt to involve millions of French citizens in a structured exercise of collective deliberation over a two-month period. Building on the shortcomings of this empirical attempt, the paper then considers two different visions for an algorithm-powered scaled-up form of mass deliberation—Mass Online Deliberation on the one hand and a multiplicity of rotating randomly selected mini-publics on the other—theorizing various ways Artificial Intelligence could play a role in either of them…(More)”.