Information for G01309
Citizens' juries: reflections on the UK experience (PLA 40)
Citizens’ juries have become established in the UK in a remarkably short space of time. They are an approach to public participation which appears acceptable both to policy makers and to people in communities. The enthusiasm with which those in both central and local governing bodies have supported citizens’ juries will be viewed with some cynicism. For example, are they being used to avoid more challenging ways of communicating
with local communities? Do they have any influence on policy? Can citizens’ juries really be independent? This article will give an overview of the approach as it has been adopted in the UK. Then, using examples from two citizens’ jury processes in Scotland, it will examine how citizens’ juries can enable local people to make a difference to policy, but only if they are run an open and public manner and if they address locally relevant issues.
This article was published in PLA 40: Deliberative Democracy and Citizen Empowerment (February 2001). Participatory Learning and Action (PLA, formerly PLA Notes) is the world's leading series on participatory learning and action approaches and methods. PLA publishes articles on participation aimed at practitioners, researchers, academics, students and activists. All articles are peer-reviewed by an international editorial board.
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