The main objectives of the DEMOS project can be summarised as enabling and encouraging
citizens to easily participate in political discussions and public decision making processes.
Partners in the DEMOS project come from a broad range of institutions and companies, all
sharing a mutual interest in counteracting against the apparent disenchantment with politics,
which has become a challenge for democracy.
To achieve these goals, the task is to develop and evaluate a new Internet tool to support
democratic discussion and decision making by a large number of citizens. DEMOS is not only
working on the technical aspect of this enterprise, but primarily on finding a way to attract
and actively involve thousands of users with different cultural backgrounds and interests. It
is not sufficient to provide discussion forums on various topics only, since users tend to get
lost in a plethora of different issues, views, and interests.
So the overall challenge is to implement an Internet platform with enough structure,
directionand external input to keep users interested and engaged.
The project is planned to make a substantial breakthrough in on-line consultation, where
currently no acceptable means exist to handle large scale discussion processes and
deliberative opinion formation.