Attempting Democratic Experimentalism

Xarkis festival presentation by the Cypriot Puzzle Democratic experimentalism

Xarkis Festival | August 16th 2014

Big thank you to everyone who attended and especially to Xarkis Festival for hosting us :)
Hopefully we ‘ll get to have many more discussions soon.
The presentation was as follows:


  • Intro: This is an experiment on the research field of decision-making processes in society.
  • Why do we do the research?
    •  As social beings, we are, on a daily basis involved in reaching common decisions that determine the future of our social groups.
    • By becoming more aware of these decision-making processes, we reach a position from which we can better evaluate their applications in our daily social interactions.
  • Plan- The workshop consists of two small theoretical presentations:
    • Introduction to social-decision-making structures.
    •  Introduction to basic principles of problem solving.
    • Each of these is followed by the examination of the application of the mentioned theories in an experimental case study of The Cypriot Puzzle, a grass root initiative that aims to directly involve all concerned Cypriots in the decision-making process regarding the solution of the Cypriot problem.
    • 1st Part: Decision-making structures:
      • Hierarchical
      •  Democratic
      • Representative democracy
      • Direct democracy
      • Anarchy (absence of a system/structure)
      • Case study: The Cypriot problem
        • Which structure is more efficient?
        • Which structure is fairer?
        • Which structure/s have been tested so far?
        • Is a structure of direct democracy possible?
        • If yes, how?
        • Isn’t it necessary to consider the various aspects of the problem before deciding on a definitive direct-democratic structure?
    • 2nd Part: Principles of decision/ problem-solving principles
      • Analysis of the problem
      • Criteria of what a ‘successful solution’ must be
      • Possible solutions
      • Method and application of criteria in choosing between competing proposed solutions.
      • Case study: The Cypriot Puzzle
        • Analysis of the problem: video and a discussion of what needs to be researched in this area.
        • Criteria:
          • Viability?
          • Fairness?
          • Effectiveness?
        • Possible solutions: a discussion of how to reach a point of proposing solutions.
        • Need of small working groups producing consultation papers
        • Issue of technical knowledge
        • Need of ‘glossary’ common terminology
        • Need of a ‘hierarchical’ or representative democratic structure to provide technical knowledge

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