Journal of Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics Social Sciences Edition ›› 2021, Vol. 34 ›› Issue (2): 80-90.DOI: 10.13766/j.bhsk.1008-2204.2019.0270

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Generating Mechanism of “Involution” for Grass-roots Democratic Consultation: Exploratory Research Based on Grounded Theory

FANG Weihua, XU Zonggang   

  1. School of Public Administration, Beihang University, Beijing 100083, China
  • Received:2019-08-30 Published:2021-04-02

Abstract: At present, the phenomenon of "involution" is widespread in the practice of grass-roots consultative democracy in China, and its internal generating mechanism is worth exploring. Based on the grounded theory, a detailed study on the practice of deliberative democracy in W city shows that the "involution" of deliberative democracy is mainly manifested in the resistance of the "consultation" mode to the "decision-making consultation" mode. The main reasons for the "internalization" are the "soft constraint" nature of the external system supporting the development of consultative democracy, "behavior alienation" driven by innovation of management bureaucrats, "flexible implementation of street bureaucrats" and "participation indifference" of mass participants. In order to solve the problem of "involution", we should build a "hard constraint" system, strengthen the "performance expectation" of "management bureaucrats", increase the utility expectation of "street bureaucrats", eliminate the space of reverse "flexible implementation", and fully cultivate non-governmental organizations.

Key words: deliberative democracy, grounded theory, citizen participation, power allocation, governance mechanism

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