Dr. Dannica Fleuss
Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Guest lecture at the University of Nairobi: Epistemic Abstinence and/or Political Activism?

January 2021

Democracies’ political legitimacy crucially depends on their acknowledgment of all individuals’ equal autonomy: policies and principles are legitimate if and only if they result from inclusive democratic procedures. This means that all members of a community have equal rights to determine their collective course of action.  My lecture critically assessed what this ‘normative core’ of democratic political legitimacy means for the role of political philosophers or theorists. 

My thanks goes to Dr. Reginald Odour and inspiring colleagues at the University of Nairobi for lively debates!

Webinar Series / PSA, ECPR & APSA groups are "Rebooting Democracy"

November 2020

The three-part webinar series "Democracy Rebooted: Classic Concepts for Contemporary Times" is designed to revisit key concepts in democratic theory and practice and reflect on their relevance today. Participants are encouraged to take part in the conversation as well. Speakers are Donatella della Porta, Graham Smith and Jane Mansbridge.

The series is co-hosted by the Political Studies' Association's Specialist Group for Participatory and Deliberative Democracy (PDD), the ECPR Standing Group on Democratic Innovations, and the newly formed APSA Related Group on Democratic Innovations.

For full info and recordings of the webinars that happened so far click here

Podcast released: Evaluating Online Deliberation with Lyn Carson, NewDemocracy Foundation (Sydney)


Episode 17, Facilitating Public Deliberation Podcast - available here


Participatory & Deliberative Democracy Specialist Group, PSA: Co-Conveners and Webinar Series


I'm very glad to be one of the freshly elected co-conveners of the Political Studies Association's Specialist Group for Participatory and Deliberative Democracy. Thanks for the support and input at PDD's Annual General Meeting. 

Our first project is the Summer Webinar Series - check out  the full program and registration links here

Fourth Deliberative Democracy Summer School, University of Canberra


So glad to be part of this - amazing PhD projects and international  scholars coming together at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance to debate deliberative democratic theory, empirical research, political practice!

Public panel discussion at Hamburg Research Academy: "Departments statt Lehrstühle?" - Working conditions in German Academia


Hamburg Research Academy's Postdoc Council (represented by Benedikt Kriegesmann and myself) organised and chaired a public panel discussion on working conditions and job perspectives for young researchers in Germany - featuring Arndt Wonka (Uni Bremen), Jule Specht (HU Berlin), Christoph Harig (HSU Hamburg) & René Gögge (B90 / Die Grünen, Hamburg). 

Check out the report here: "Departments statt Lehrstühle - Freiheit für den akademischen Mittelbau?" - Gastbeitrag, Blog Hamburg Research Academy

Stay tuned for our podcast! 


Panel "Varieties of Radical Democracy Today" at 26th IPSA World Congress in Lisbon confirmed!


Radical democrats jointly commit to two “root meanings” of democracy: the free and equal participation of ‘the people’ and democracy’s self-grounding, self-legitimating, reflexive nature. In spite of this shared common ground, radical democrats adhere to different paradigms and traditions of political theory: Next to Marxist thinkers, agonistic and post-foundationalist as well as deliberative and republican scholars refer to their own theory as ‘radically democratic’. The panel asks: (How) Can radical democrats adhering to different theoretical paradigms bridge these divides? What could be a shared “radical democracy project” that unites theorists adhering to different paradigms of democratic theory? How can this project be promoted in democratic theory as well as in political practice?

I'm looking forward to debates with Andreas Busen, Carol Gould, Amanda Machin, Anna Hollendung, Anne Hoss & Ricardo Silva! 

Call for Papers: Panel on "Digital Democracy and Its Future - Radical Democracy in Online Participatory Spaces?"


The panel organised by Hans Asenbaum and myself raises the following questions: Do digital spaces provide the basis for realising a radical democratic vision of politics? Do digital spaces foster democratic and inclusive debates or do they facilitate populism, fake news and radicalization? How can practitioners, citizens, and activists counteract such threats?  
Please find detailed information in the CfP below and send us you paper abstracts by Jan 31, 2020!

Link: CfP-Radical-Democracy-Digital.pdf 

CfP-PDD: Digital Democracy & Radical Democracy
CfP-Radical-Democracy-Digital.pdf (124.58KB)
CfP-PDD: Digital Democracy & Radical Democracy
CfP-Radical-Democracy-Digital.pdf (124.58KB)

APSA "Raise the Vote Campaign": Political theory-arguments for political participation


Why Vote? - In my freshly published blog article on Political Science Now, I summarize political theorists' arguments for engaging in political participation.

I highlight that "the impact citizens can have in actively engaging in politics is actually far more significant and multi-faceted than the picture of us going to the ballot box from time to time may suggest. [Accordingly, ...] democratic political engagement should be seen as something that is deeply embedded in our everyday practices and our social lives. It does not only refer to campaigning for professional political parties, it also refers to the opinion- and will-formation processes that result from exchanges with our colleagues and neighbors, from pub table-conversations or debates in sports clubs, the academic classroom or in public townhall meetings."

To read the arguments I am proposing against this background, click here: Political Science Now

Talk: Teaching (the Theory of) Civil Disobedience at DVPW Congress, Goethe University Frankfurt

13. 12.2019

It was my pleasure to discuss the role(s) of teachers at DVPW Congress "Wie relevant ist die Politikwissenschaft?" dedicated to the following questions: "How relevant is political science to the broader society? What are the means available to political scientists for 'making a difference'? (How) Should we use them?" 
Based on my teaching experiences in different societal and political contexts, I addressed the question: Should we  teach normative arguments for justifying political protest or civil disobedience? Should we, as teachers, adopt normative stances regarding concrete political issues? -- If democracy or human rights are challenged, should we then even encourage our students to engage in civil disobedience or protests? 

In case you missed our discussions (and know a little German), check out the recordings of Panel IV - the link to the video portal of Goethe University Frankfurt is: Video Panel IV Frankfurt

Panel "Quo Vadis Radical Democracy?" at PSA 2020 confirmed! 


I am looking forward to our discussion at PSA's annual conference 2020! The panel "Quo vadis radical democracy?", convened by Hans Asenbaum (IASS Potsdam / University of Westminster) and myself will include a range of brilliant papers by Andrea Felicetti (KU Leuven) & Lorenzo Cini (Scuala Normale Superior), Amanda Machin (Uni Witten / Herdecke), William Smith (Chinese University of Hongkong) and Paulina Tambakaki (University of Westminster).

In case you want to know what we're up to, there's our panel outline:

Panel Outline "Quo Vadis Radical Democracy?"
Panel-PSA2020-final_Quo_Vadis_Radical_Democracy.pdf (107.61KB)
Panel Outline "Quo Vadis Radical Democracy?"
Panel-PSA2020-final_Quo_Vadis_Radical_Democracy.pdf (107.61KB)