Digital Democracy: Policy and Politics in the Wired World

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Cynthia Jacqueline Alexander, Leslie Alexander Pal
Oxford University Press, 1998 - Political Science - 237 pages
The Information Age has ushered in significant change, not only to the work people do and how they communicate with each other, but also to the broad political landscape. In the new wired world, collections of widely scattered individuals with a common interest or a shared concern about a specific social issue quickly form and make their collective voice heard--a 'collective'voice that could not have existed only a few years ago. Politicians and political parties are using new information and communications technologies to an unprecedented degree, but so are citizens, with potentially profound impacts on our democracy and representative institutions. National security issues have been compromised by computer hackers and foreign governments. Life-determining decisions on patients' health care are often made by computer programs rather than by doctors and nurses. And freedom of expression, privacy, and social norms and mores are under constant barrage from various directions over the flood of Internet pornography and the extent to which corporations and governments gather and disseminate information that is private to the individual. In Digital Democracy: Policy and Politics in the Wired World, editors Cynthia J. Alexander and Leslie A. Pal present 12 important essays by Canadian and American scholars on the impact of cyberspace on politics and the implications this impact has for our future as private citizens. Also included is an important Preface by Edwin R. Black, who 15 years ago, in his presidential address to the Canadian Political Science Association, voiced a firm warning about the influence of new communications technologies on the body politic. As Black writes: 'It's happening right under our noses, it's important, and not enough people are paying attention.'

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New Currents in Politics and Policy I
Implications of Informal International Networking
Social forces in the Ilypermedia Environment

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About the author (1998)

Cynthia J. Alexander teaches Political Science at Acadia University. Leslie A. Pal is a Professor of Public Policy and Administration at the School of Public Administration at Carleton University. He earned is B.A. (Hon) from Mount Allison University and a doctorate from Queen's University (Kingston). He has taught for two years at the University of Waterloo, and for ten years at the University of Calgary before taking up his current position at Carleton University. He has been a visiting scholar at the J.F.K. Institute for North American Studies at the Free University of Berlin, and lectures throughout North America and Europe. Dr. Pal has served on the national board of the Canadian political Science Association and the Institute of Public Administration of Canada. He earned a Canadian Studies Writing Award in 1989 for his book Interests of the State: The Politics of Language, Multiculturalism and Feminism in Canada (McGill-Queen's University Press, 1993), and received a Research Achievement Award from Carleton University in 1996.

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