Deliberative polling, a method elaborated by Professor Fishkin (Center for Deliberative Democracy) of Stanford University, aims to remove the barriers which hinder people’s participation in public affairs. Maria Rogaczewska of the Institute of Sociology, University of Warsaw, a co-founder of Social Project 2012, spoke about deliberative polling in practice during a meeting in Bunkier Sztuki (series: City Project). The questions asked by the audience showed both their interest in the subject matter and a certain mistrust in deliberative polling as a reliable method of the decision making process in randomly selected social groups. Like any other way of collective decision making, deliberative polling is not an ideal method. However, it has the major advantage in that, besides the decision making act, it also involves civic education and pleasure at participating in a social event.
In Poland, apart from deliberative polling, another example of civic cooperation in decision making are groups animated by the Association of Leaders of Local Civic Groups, which sets participatory budgeting in villages. In long-standing democracies there are various efficient forms of civic participation, including planning cells or citizens’ jury. Hopefully, there will yet be other opportunities to talk of these and other forms of participatory democracy in Art Library.