Consensus conference, Democracy, Participation, Technology assessment
Science and Technology Studies
The consensus conference is a participatory mechanism that envisages ordinary citizens engaging with experts (scientists and other knowledge producers) on issues of compelling social significance. It invites ordinary citizens to bring their life experience and values to the serious consideration of a technology that may have far-reaching consequences. Three selected examples of consensus conferences are examined in order to see how they match the ideal. The paper concludes with thoughts about the adequacy of evaluation frameworks and suggest that a more dynamic model of consensus conference evaluation (based on public understanding of science models) might invite more compelling reflections about the success or failure of a particular consensus conference.
Coe, Jan R., "What is the ideal consensus conference, and how would we recognize it if we saw one?" (2005). Working Papers on Science in a Changing World. 9.
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