Page of

Future Generations and the Limits of Representation

Future Generations and the Limits of Representation

(p.204) Chapter Nine Future Generations and the Limits of Representation
Creating Political Presence
Kerry H. Whiteside
University of Chicago Press

While the idea of representing future generations arises frequently in discussions of sustainable development, neither standard models nor constructivist accounts of representation apply convincingly to situations in which constituents do not yet exist. This is mainly due to the fact that it is difficult to imagine how future generations can hold their “present” representatives to account. Democratic concern for future generations is better regarded as a matter of deliberative institutional design. Jury-like forums could be integrated into a deliberative system as testing-grounds for future-regarding principles, as sustainability monitors of policy implementation, and as accountability agents in relation to “presentist” institutions. Such deliberative institutions and processes, however, should not just be consultative but carry real powers within the legislative process.

Keywords:   presentism, future-regarding, deliberative design

Sign In

Copyright © 2021. All rights reserved.
Privacy Policy and Legal Notice