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Working Groups

Civic Participation

In this new working group, we will read and discuss current work to obtain an overview on the mathematical theory of civic participation. While such work frequently appears in computer science and economics, we welcome members from all backgrounds.
We focus on novel modes of democratic decision making that complement traditional elections, such as sortition (randomly selecting representatives), liquid democracy (voting with transitive delegations), virtual democracy (automating ethical decision making), participatory budgeting (allocating public spending by vote), and deliberation (finding decisions via reasoned group discussion).


Currently, work on civic participation is mainly organized by each specific mode of participation, and there is no clear place to learn about modes that one does not yet know about. To close this gap, the goal of this group is to write a survey paper including (but not limited to) the modes of participation listed above. We also hope to make connections to work on civic participation in the social sciences and philosophy.


The group will meet every second week throughout the Fall semester. We expect members to attend meetings, prepare a group presentation, and contribute to the survey paper.

Selected Papers

The following papers are examples of the types of paper we are thinking of reading together. We note that this list is not exhaustive (and skews heavily toward computer science) and we do not expect members to have read these papers prior to joining the group.

Gerdus Benadè, Paul Gölz, and Ariel D. Procaccia. "No stratification without representation." EC 2019.
Bailey Flanigan, Paul Gölz, Anupam Gupta, and Ariel D. Procaccia. “Neutralizing Self-Selection Bias in Sampling for Sortition.” 2020. 

Virtual democracy:
Vincent Conitzer, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Jana Schaich Borg, Yuan Deng, and Max Kramer. "Moral Decision Making Frameworks for Artificial Intelligence." AAAI 2017. 
Anson Kahng, Min Kyung Lee, Ritesh Noothigattu, Ariel D. Procaccia, and Christos-Alexandros Psomas. "Statistical foundations of virtual democracy." ICML 2019. 

Liquid democracy:
Anson Kahng, Simon Mackenzie, and Ariel D. Procaccia. "Liquid democracy: An algorithmic perspective." AAAI 2018. 
Ioannis Caragiannis and Evi Micha. “A Contribution to the Critique of Liquid Democracy.” IJCAI 2019.

Participatory budgeting:
Gerdus Benadè, Swaprava Nath, Ariel D. Procaccia, and Nisarg Shah. "Preference elicitation for participatory budgeting." AAAI 2017. 
Ashish Goel, Anilesh K. Krishnaswamy, Sukolsak Sakshuwong, and Tanja Aitamurto. "Knapsack voting for participatory budgeting." TEAC 7, no. 2 (2019).

Brandon Fain, Ashish Goel, Kamesh Munagala, and Sukolsak Sakshuwong. "Sequential deliberation for social choice." WINE 2017. 
Edith Elkind, Davide Grossi, Ehud Shapiro, and Nimrod Talmon. "Egalitarian Deliberative Decision Making." 2020. 

Working Group Organizers

Paul Gölz Ph.D. Student in Computer Science Carnegie Mellon University
Anson Kahng Ph.D. Student in Computer Science Carnegie Mellon University