I’ve sent it. Nervous.

So before I get any feedback on it here’s what I think are the strengths and weaknesses of my first attempt at a theoretical chapter on participatory democracy.


  1. Its a bona fide piece of writing, written down into paragraphs with a structure!
  2. I think it ends up connecting to my research question, in other words it has the beginnings of an ‘NGO test’ which might be applicable – a lot of work to do on it though.
  3. I think I have a basic handle on the literature – it covers quite a broad range.
  4. I think it develops a case for participatory democracy which is on its way to standing up (I might be wrong about that!).
  5. It has references, and Zotero is pretty much functioning now (thanks to Charles and his style sheet).


  1. Perhaps too broad and definetly too long. Twice as long as it should be in fact. What am I going to send to the PhD roundtable in the next couple of weeks, the whole thing is much too long?
  2. Do I read too fast and not spend enough time digesting particular arguments.
  3. Not sure about the four fold structure – does the section on ‘difference democrcy’ really belong?  Or is it the same thing as participatory democracy?
  4. Is the first section on the democratic debates too basic and a bit waffly?
  5. I am nervous that I do not actually say very much about what participatory democracy would practically look like? Is this actually what I should be doing?
  6. I still think there are big gaps in my review of the literature – there is plenty more I could do ( perhaps revisit after I have looked at other areas?).

Next on the agenda: This, then civil society, advocacy and government funding.  Then Irish government policy on NGOs.