The Alternative University Project (AltU) grew out of the frustration felt by a group of McGill and Concordia University students about the growing inaccessibility of the Quebec higher education system. The AltU is a collection of classes taught by professors, students, community members, or through innovative communal formats on subjects which range from “Knitting” and “Programming” to “Introduction to Anarchism” and “New Materials Writing Workshop and Discussion.”
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This case study features a citizens' deliberation on the renovation of a public square in Italy. Many meetings and workshops were organized to take many different stakeholders' perspectives into account, including those of minorities and disabled individuals. The result was a successful, participatory decision to make some major construction modifications to the square.
This case is a randomized field experiment, which examines the differences in decision-making and legitimacy in town meeting versus plebiscitary (direct voting) methods of decision. The experimenter - Benjamin Olken - examined this question in the context of decisions about infrastructure investments in Indonesian villages.