Abstract - The Information Society 26(1)

Expanding the Possibilities of Deliberation: The Use of Data Mining for Strengthening Democracy with an Application to Education Reform

Juan D. Velásquez and Pablo González

Deliberation is important for strengthening democracies and enhancing the legitimacy of public policy. However, deliberation has been constrained by limits of time, space and human capacities for listening and processing information. This paper discusses a new technology based tool and shows how it can help partially remove these constraints. While the Internet already provides the means to deliberate without the need to meet at the same place and time, its conjunction with data mining solves the “large numbers deliberation dilemma” which arises when large amounts of data have to be processed. Our proposal adapts particular Data Mining techniques, which simulates the learning process of a human brain with almost infinite relational capacities. The methodology was applied in a real world case of Chilean education reform and demonstrated its potential effectiveness.


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