Authors: Jante Schmidt , Margo Trappenburg
New forms of participatory and deliberative democracy gain popularity alongside traditional representative democracy at the local level in the Netherlands. In this article we look at passive citizens defined as citizens who do not participate in any of the new practices. How do they perceive the shift trom traditional to new forms of democracy (defined as stakeholder democracy, deliberative polling and associative or 'do' democracy)? We performed a Q-methodological study to find patterns of opinion among passive citizens. We found three patterns. Critical citizens are critical about both traditional representative democracy and new forms of democracy. Loyal citizens support traditional local democracy and do not think the shift to other forms is a change for the better. Distant citizens find that politicians should first and foremost uphold the law and act as referees when citizens disagree. This task has been neglected over the years but this deficiency cannot be remedied by new forms of democracy. All three patterns of opinion are cause for concern for the advocates of more participatory and deliberative democracy. While these new forms may restore faith in polities among active citizens they may simultaneously alienate passive citizens.
How to Cite: Schmidt, J. & Trappenburg, M. (2017) “Het zou zomaar een zootje kunnen worden : Een Q-methodologisch onderzoek naar de ideeën van nonparticipanten over de relatie tussen representatieve en participatieve democratie op lokaal niveau”, Res Publica. 59(1).