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From Crisis to Direct Democracy? - The Case of Iceland

From Crisis to Direct Democracy? - The Case of Iceland


"Let the banks fail." This a a conclusion one might have looking at the development in Iceland. But does a closer look change this impression? Find the report by Carsten Berg below.

After the big financial crisis starting in 2008, Iceland has the potential to reinvent itself. In response to the devastating economic collapse caused by irresponsible bankers and politicians, Icelanders became active politically and struggled to find new ways of self-determination and democracy. First of all they started the so-called “pots-and-pans” revolution (so called because protesters were banging their pots and pans loudly) in the streets of Reykjavik that led to a new government in 2009 and a demand for a fully newly designed Republic of Iceland. In addition, Icelanders organized two referendums, in 2010 and 2011, to decide on the fate of two government bills regarding deposit guarantees. Last but not least, a total revision of the national constitution has been launched and a first draft presented in July 2011 which includes new instruments of direct democracy. All these elements were good reasons to travel to the world’s most northerly capital and explore Iceland’s latest direct democracy developments in more detail.

Download: Direct Democracy in Iceland 

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