Abstract and Keywords
This chapter provides an overview of the empirical research on online deliberation, focusing on three aspects: the preconditions of online deliberations, the communicative processes of online deliberations as well as the central outcomes of online deliberations. Regarding preconditions, we provide an overview of sampling choices and use of incentives in recruitment. We also demonstrate the ways in which scholars have designed online deliberations. We gauge elements such as whether online deliberations are asynchronous or synchronous, allow for anonymous participants or not, employ facilitators or not, and how information materials are used. Regarding the communicative processes, we pinpoint a gap in the research since there are still rather few studies actually measuring discursive quality in online deliberation. Concerning outcomes of online deliberations, the chapter focuses mainly on how taking part in online deliberation affects participants. We also provide a brief overview of how online deliberations have been tied to actual policy-making.
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