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Pragmatist DemocracyEvolutionary Learning as Public Philosophy$
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Christopher Ansell

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199772438

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199772438.001.0001

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Democratic Governance in a Pragmatist Key

Democratic Governance in a Pragmatist Key

(p.3) Chapter 1 Democratic Governance in a Pragmatist Key
Pragmatist Democracy

Christopher K. Ansell

Oxford University Press

Public agencies are the nexus between democracy and governance. But they are often held in low regard, in part because they face a large gap between discretion (low) and responsibility (high). Pragmatist philosophy is a resource for imagining a more productive democratic role for public agencies. Pragmatism advances an evolutionary learning perspective, which is anti-dualist, problem-driven, reflexive, and deliberative. This evolutionary learning perspective offers a valuable framework for public philosophy and the social sciences.

Keywords:   public agencies, democracy, governance, pragmatism, learning

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