Australian Lefty on Politics, Governance, Science and Info Management

Does Democracy Need a Marketing Manager?

Posted by Dave Bath on 2008-02-14

In a recent Harvard Business School Working Knowledge Article, an analogy is made between enticing consumers to buy products and encouraging people to be active in democratic processes.  Regular readers will know I constantly advocate for greater participation in government, and I draw everyone’s attention to the links on the right to various pages on the 2020 Rudd gabfest website.

The article seems to be focussed on encouraging participation in party political processes, and the marketing by governments of their services.  It’s a bit of a pity that the wider issue of participation in development of policy (such as responding to Senate and departmental inquiries) is not a highlight of the overview paper.

Has anyone read the book, and does it cover participation in policy or process development?


2 Responses to “Does Democracy Need a Marketing Manager?”

  1. zombinol said

    I have not read the book, however, I agree that participation of the citizenry in parliamentary process when policy is formed is a good thing. Simply marketing services is crude and doesn’t make the product any better or the consumer any wiser, the Howard government exemplified that.

    In changing the public perception of what parliament and its policy formation processes are, I believe, needs a more effective communication model, marketing in my mind has its end point in the act of purchasing what was marketed.

    The problem is never how to get new, innovative thoughts into your mind, but how to get the old ones out. Perhaps perception management should underpin the communications process to inform better the possible engagements of citizen with parliament.

    In another post you mentioned “crap in, crap out” with relation to quality of information in computer systems, parliament can be just as systematic, add the citizen to the bipartisan and bring on tripartisan politics and more informed debate will ensue.

  2. SEO said

    In the UK they have marketed democracy to us very well- we currently have been convinced we are a democracy when we have an un-elected Prime Minster in power!
    Go figure- spin is alive and well me thinks….

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