Knowledge Centre



Crowdsourced Deliberation: The Case of the Law on Off-Road Traffic in Finland

by Tanja Aitamurto

Jan 1, 2016

This article examines the emergence of democratic deliberation in a crowdsourced law reform process.The empirical context of the study is a crowdsourced legislative reform in Finland, initiated by theFinnish government. The findings suggest that online exchanges in the crowdsourced process qualifyas democratic deliberation according to the classical definition. We introduce the term "crowdsourceddeliberation" to mean an open, asynchronous, depersonalized, and distributed kind of onlinedeliberation occurring among self-selected participants in the context of an attempt by government oranother organization to open up the policymaking or lawmaking process. The article helps tocharacterize the nature of crowdsourced policymaking and to understand its possibilities as a practicefor implementing open government principles. We aim to make a contribution to the literature oncrowdsourcing in policymaking, participatory and deliberative democracy and, specifically, the newlyemerging subfield in deliberative democracy that focuses on "deliberative systems."