anticipatory democracy

An anticipatory democracy, according to its advocates, is one where the sciences, e.g. ecology, and betting mechanism and market-based methods, e.g. prediction markets, and judicial mechanisms, e.g. science courts, all have formal status and help provide future focus to democratic decision making.


Prominent advocates of anticipatory models include K. Eric Drexler, Newt Gingrich and Stewart Brand.

Michael Pilling advocates a variant he calls an "open market for ideas".

The Green Party of Canada debated but ultimately refused to recognize anticipatory methods in its Platform 2005 process, due to Platform 2005 process constraints it would have put on, notably time to do the necessary outreach and training, and challenge to the single command hierarchy "in charge"


The most robust prediction market that considers bets on major political questions is longbets.org.

Anticipatory methods are used in industry now, e.g. hsx.com, Yahoo Buzz Game, and innumerable stock market games, all deployed as web services (and probably impossible to deploy any other way).

Their use in politics or for major decision making has been controversial largely because the scenario approach has no fixed authority to take full responsibility for any decisions made. Some fear that any anticipatory forum becomes a battlefield of ideas.


A primary question in anticipatory methods is the supposedly equal power relationship that applies between all particiapnts, especially the degree of respect accorded the views of legislators with special expertise in a domain.

How should they express their concerns, predictions, bets, or other contributions? Do they get a "head start" since they have spent more time on critical thought about the problems? Are some people to be priveleged, e.g. with more "starting revert currency"?

A key issue in any anticipatory model is the motivation of such highly qualified people: Why would they both contributing to a process that also involves justifying themselves to people of no particular expertise and requirements to participate at others' convenience or even subjecting their carefully considered views to vote?

In the courtier model that is often applied in a representative democracy, these people are answerable to no one other than a few people actually involved in decision making, which is no doubt more comfortable. But then the value of the wide consultation is lost.

Refer link anticipatory_democracy.