1 October 2017 - 31 August 2018
»Who constitutes legitimate demos? Settlers, migrants, and the indigenous populations«
My research agenda explores the challenges, opportunities, and best methods of inclusion and representation of marginalized communities in democratic decision-making processes. In my doctoral dissertation, I examined whether people are willing and capable of engaging in deliberations with those with whom they disagree on issues that touch upon their cultural and religious identities. In particular, I devised and, through experiments, tested the efficacy of two facilitation methods in increasing the capacity of participants to participate in a respectful, reflective, and constructive way. While I found some evidence of unwillingness for participation in deliberations that can challenge the cultural and religious identities of participants, the facilitative methods were both highly successful at increasing discourse quality by limiting the instances of engagement in undesired behaviours. In my future research, I will expand this research to consider the best methods of evaluation and regulation of speech in liberal multicultural democracies in addition to a project that looks at the all- affected principle through the lens of principles of justice. (Afsoun Afsahi)
In 2016, Afsoun Afsahi received her PhD from the University of British Columbia with a dissertation entitled »Can we talk? Examining Willingness and Facilitating Deliberative Capital«. From September 2018 on, following her stay at the Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften, Afsoun Afsahi will be Assistant Professor at the Department of Political Theory and Gender Department at Amsterdam University.
Main areas of research
Democratic theory, discourse theory, multicultrualism, quantitative and experimental methodology
»Kantian democracy: interdependence, legitimacy, and progress«, Manuscript submitted for publication to Telos, 2017. (Forthcoming)