Citizen Voice in a Globalized World

Bobby Fishkin
David Witzel
July 02, 2014


In today’s world, the global economy is highly interconnected, but the global polity is weak, rudimentary, and fragmented. Market forces speak with a booming voice and get all the best lines, while nonmarket forces—especially citizen’s preferences about global affairs—are typically ill informed, poorly articulated, and hard to hear. This paper explores options for uncovering and amplifying informed global public opinion as a means for improving the decisions of international bodies and of national and sub-national governments in regards to global issues. The paper examines problems in ascertaining citizen preferences and surveys common approaches. It then makes the case for a specific approach—deliberative polling—and explores possibilities for using it to help address the comparative weakness of the global polity.

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