Towards Knowledge Democracy

Nieuws | de redactie
3 juni 2009 | How do science, politics and media deal with their ever more challenging interfaces in the 21st century? The tensions between them – and with society and citizens – are manifest. Is a ‘knowledge economy’ ready for a ‘knowledge democracy’? These and other vital and challenging questions will be addressed by the international conference ‘Towards Knowledge Democracy’ in Leiden, the Netherlands, 25-27 August 2009.

The tensions are growing as information nowadays is widely available to everyone on the Internet and can be used for one’s own advantage. Nowadays the democratisation of knowledge is an important fact of life. All kinds of mechanisms urge scientists to make their knowledge public. In some domains turnover rates of knowledge are high, in other domains the basic knowledge remains the same, but interpretations (paradigmatic views) may change over time.

How do governments respond to the greater availability of knowledge for citizens and societal groups, the higher education level in society in general and the progress in information technology? How do they respond to high turnover rates of knowledge and – conversely – how do scientists respond to high turnover rates of policy concepts?

The conference will adress not only these issues, but will also question the role of the media in the emerging knowledge democracy. And when do citizens and stakeholders come in? E-government and e-governance are already well known concepts not only to make policy processes more efficient, but also to inform citizens in a better way.

The ‘essentials document’ of ‘Towards Knowledge Democracy’ on the issues raised at this conference can be read here. You are warmly invited to share your ideas and views at this event with organisations such as the Royal Academy of Sciences (KNAW), the European Environment Agency, WRR, Leiden University, European Commission, ScienceGuide and host-initiator RMNO, the Dutch council for research on Nature, Environment and Spatial Planning.

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