On the past 24th of January, Decidim.org coordinator Arnau Monterde was part of the international forum “Democracy in a Digital Society – Trust, Evidence and Public Discourse in a Changing Media Environment”. The event was organized by ALLEA, the European Federation of 60 Academies of Sciences and Humanities in 40 countries, and Re-Imagine Europe, the first European incubator for new civic and political ideas, founded by President Giscard d’Estaing.
With the starting point that communication ecosystem is central to a well-functioning society and its influence in shaping minds and thus reality, the programme emphasized the fact that the control and ownership of the internet will be one of the most important battles of our time.
This full day conference addressed some of the most pressing questions around the impact of digital transformations on democratic institutions in Europe and beyond. Under the scientific leadership of Prof. Manuel Castells, over 100 renowned speakers from policy, academia, journalism and civil society reflected on different aspects of political legitimation, societal trust, scientific evidence and public discourse in a rapidly changing media environment
Other confirmed speakers were President Hans-Gert Pöttering, former President of the European Parliament, Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society and Ms Monica Maggioni, President of RAI, Vice-President of the European Broadcasting Union.
Decidim’s coordinator Arnau Monterde lead the session “Citizen Engagement: Empowering Citizens in the Digital Age”, which explored the impact of digital on society, both in creating social movements as well as how societies relate to the digital. Acknowledging the fact that social networks have had a dramatic effect on political agency and can be both be a tool of empowerment as well as manipulation, Monterde explain how Decidim, as a political network, empower citizens and participatory democracy.