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Research Article

Stakeholder and Citizen Roles in Public Deliberation

Authors:

David Kahane ,

Department of Political Science, University of Alberta, CA
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Professor
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Kristjana Loptson,

Department of Political Science, University of Alberta, CA
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Doctoral student
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Jade Herriman,

Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology, Sydney, AU
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Research Principal
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Max Hardy

Twyfords Consulting, AU
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Director
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Abstract

This paper explores theoretical and practical distinctions between individual citizens (‘citizens’) and organized groups (‘stakeholder representatives’ or ‘stakeholders’ for short) in public participation processes convened by government as part of policy development. Distinctions between ‘citizen’ and ‘stakeholder’ involvement are commonplace in government discourse and practice; public involvement practitioners also sometimes rely on this distinction in designing processes and recruiting for them. Recognizing the complexity of the distinction, we examine both normative and practical reasons why practitioners may lean toward—or away from—recruiting citizens, stakeholders, or both to take part in deliberations, and how citizen and stakeholder roles can be separated or combined within a process. The article draws on a 2012 Canadian-Australian workshop of deliberation researchers and practitioners to identify key challenges and understandings associated with the categories of stakeholder and citizen and their application, and hopes to continue this conversation with the researcher-practitioner community.

How to Cite: Kahane, D., Loptson, K., Herriman, J., & Hardy, M. (2013). Stakeholder and Citizen Roles in Public Deliberation. Journal of Public Deliberation, 9(2), 2. DOI: http://doi.org/10.16997/jdd.164
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Published on 25 Oct 2013.
Peer Reviewed

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