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Peter Humphreys and Seamus Simpson

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The New Global Politics of Science

Knowledge, Markets and the State

Mats Benner

Science has become a central political concern with massive increases in public investments and expectations, but resources are embedded in a complex web of societal expectations, which vary between countries and regions. This book outlines an insightful understanding of science policy as both concerning the governance of science itself (priority-setting, funding, organization and articulation with polity, society, and economy) and its extra-organizational connections, in terms of higher education, innovation and national policy concerns.
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Peter Humphreys and Seamus Simpson

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Peter Humphreys and Seamus Simpson

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Mats Benner

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Peter Humphreys and Seamus Simpson

Media convergence is often propounded as inevitable and ongoing. Yet much of the governance of the media sector’s key parts has developed along discrete evolutionary paths, mostly incremental in character. This volume breaks new ground through exploring a diverse range of topics at the heart of the media convergence governance debate, such as next generation networks, spectrum, copyright and media subsidies. It shows how reluctance to accommodate non-market based policy solutions creates conflicts and problems resulting in only shallow media convergence thus far.
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Conclusion: The two faces of innovation

Promises and Limits of Democratic Participation in Latin America

Leonardo Avritzer

In the conclusion, the author systematizes the 11 cases on political innovation approached in the book. He has attempted to answer both sets of questions in the book through the analysis of empirical cases. He analysed six cases of participatory budgeting; three cases of accountability and two cases of judicial innovation. These cases showed a large variation in results. In some cases participatory innovation has been successfully expanded both in Brazil and Argentina and in other cases innovation was halted by the new form of relation with the political system. The political system is the main variable in the generation of success or failure in the process of innovation. The author also worked with the cases of innovation in the judicial cases in both Brazil and Colombia. He argued that the Colombian case is the one that could be considered successful precisely because it kept in mind a core of rights and norms that innovation cannot go beyond without endangering the deepening of democracy. The 11 cases of innovation in the book can throw a new light on the desirability of innovation. The distinction the author proposed in the introduction allowed us to establish a bar among the different cases. The book narrowed the concept to the cases of democratic innovation in order to assess innovations according to their role in deepening democracy and rights. This allowed him to differentiate cases of participatory budgeting, cases of participatory accountability and cases of judicial innovation. In the end, he came up with a more cautious view on innovation that does not diminish its importance. On the contrary, the book tried to closely bind innovation, rights and the deepening of democracy. Its main trust is that by being more selective deliberative democrats can better contribute to sponsor experiences of innovation.

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Councils and monitoring in Latin America as forms of participatory accountability

Promises and Limits of Democratic Participation in Latin America

Leonardo Avritzer

Chapter 4 is looks at councils in Latin America and involves what the author calls participatory accountability: the relational mechanism that connects the state and social actors in one specific dimension, namely, the implementation of public policies by elected officials and the bureaucracy. Three cases of participatory accountability are described in the chapter: policy councils in Brazil, comités de vigilancia in Bolivia and electoral councillors in Mexico. The emergence of policy councils in Brazil was the result of the infraconstitutional regulation on social and urban policies. Policy councils proliferated in the areas of health, social assistance, urban policies and child and teenager issues during the 1990s. They were initially implemented in large cities that had strong social movements and professional support for these policies. They were later expanded to most Brazilian cities. The second case is Bolivia and the process of the creation of institutions of popular participation from the bottom up. The Popular Participation Law (Ley de Participaci—n Popular – LPP) of 1994 was enacted and was the result of decades of political debate. The LPP decentralized 20 per cent of all central government revenues to local government, making the Bolivian state present in some communities for the first time since independence.

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Leonardo Avritzer

The chapter is built on the difference between judicial innovation and democratic innovation, arguing that very few among these new judicial formats are participatory in nature. In all cases, especially those related to the Supreme Court and Ministério Público, the innovation was dependent upon the initiative of professional or corporate entities. In the end, the dependence of innovation on these entities reveals a risk to the use of innovation: is judicial innovation narrowing democracy or deepening democracy? In the chapter the author explains the role of the Brazilian Supreme Court and the Ministério Público in the process of judicial innovation, in particular those innovations occurring in Brazil during the past decade. He also contrasts judicial innovation in Colombia with that in Brazil, focusing on the political dangers of judicial innovation but not disregarding the merits of successful cases of judicial innovation. He also shows in Chapter 5 that the Colombian case is more successful than the Brazilian and as a consequence does not allow us to rule out judicial innovation altogether.

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Introduction: The theory of institutional innovation – an overview

Promises and Limits of Democratic Participation in Latin America

Leonardo Avritzer

The introduction of the book discusses the state of the art of the theory of institutional innovation and discusses the main theme of the book in the following terms: because there are good reasons to promote innovation but also to stick with a democratic core of norms without which democracy itself may be endangered, the key question is: how can we learn to separate the positive from the negative elements of institutional innovation?