Undergraduate Module Descriptor

POL2120: Democratic Innovations, Deliberation and Public Policy

This module descriptor refers to the 2023/4 academic year.

Module Content

Syllabus Plan

Whilst the precise content may vary from year to year, it is envisaged that the syllabus will cover all or some of the following topics:

  • Theoretical Foundations and Roots of Deliberative Democracy and Democratic innovations
  • Varieties of democratic innovation, online and offline, at different levels: local, national, global
  • Democratic innovations in a wider context of political disaffection/ anti-politics
  • Can deliberation help to reduce polarisation and improve political discourse?
  • Case Studies and examples from around the world
  • Coupling Deliberation with Representative and Direct Democracy
  • Exploring deliberative ideals. How to we assess deliberative ‘quality’?
  • Inclusivity and equality issues: who speaks during deliberations? Who takes part?
  • Critical perspectives: exploring the legitimacy of democratic innovations
  • The impact of democratic innovations: policy impact, impact on participants

Learning and Teaching

This table provides an overview of how your hours of study for this module are allocated:

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

...and this table provides a more detailed breakdown of the hours allocated to various study activities:

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning & Teaching activities2211 x 2 hours. A combination of lecture and seminar discussion; depending on public health regulations these will be delivered online or offline
Guided Independent Study53Weekly seminar readings & seminar preparation. This includes reading and note taking, preparing short answers to seminar questions, viewing online deliberations and listening to podcasts, reading presentation slides in advance
Guided Independent Study50Self-directed learning for essay. Reading, research, applying knowledge, database searching, writing, re-drafting and editing
Guided Independent Study20Self-directed learning for blog. Independently researching a particular case from web sources and readings, applying knowledge to critically appraise it
Guided Independent Study5Participation in online forum discussions/ deliberation. ELE forum or similar – discussion topics generated by students for class to debate online (asynchronous discussion forum)

Online Resources

This module has online resources available via ELE (the Exeter Learning Environment).

Other Learning Resources