Digital Democracy in a Globalized World
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Digital Democracy in a Globalized World

Edited by Corien Prins, Colette Cuijpers, Peter L. Lindseth and Mônica Rosina

Whether within or beyond the confines of the state, digitalization continues to transform politics, society and democracy. Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) have already considerably affected political systems and structures, and no doubt they will continue to do so in the future. Adopting an international and comparative perspective, Digital Democracy in a Globalized World examines the impact of digitialization on democratic political life. It offers theoretical analyses as well as case studies to help readers appreciate the changing nature of democracy in the digital age.
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Chapter 6: The ambivalence of the impact of digitalization on democracy through the lens of privacy and transparency

Colette Cuijpers

Abstract

Digital technologies have the ability to stimulate political engagement and thus may foster representative deliberative democracy. However, digital technologies can just as easily become a challenge to democracy, either deliberately by obfuscation and manipulation or more intrinsically, as digital technologies as such are prone to bias. With a focus on transparency and privacy as underlying pillars of democracy, this chapter illustrates the challenges of digitalization for democracy. Such challenges do not pertain to one specific democratic stakeholder, but relate to the entire democratic ecosystem. Because of the complexity and variety of such ecosystems, further research should focus on better understanding the impact of digitalization on the pillars, values and interests underpinning democracy, taking into consideration the difficult interplay between the different stakeholders and technology as a separate – non-neutral – actor

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