Things New and Old. Introduction to a Debate on Representation, Participation, and Technologies after the Pandemic Crisis Outbreak

During the last year we saw a great advance in the use of new technologies. Even in the political and institutional sphere – as largely noted by scholars – practices as videoconferences and e-voting/e-consulting procedures were increasingly used. We wonder if this herald to a structural transformation of institutional mechanism of representation and participation. We therefore propose to analyze the cooperation between parliaments and political institutions in general, parliamentary procedures and even the informal statements of political officials. We would like to examine, even if briefly, all these activities realized with the new technologies, and their impact on representative functions and on participation, on democratic institutions and on the public sphere. Some activities could be considered dangerous or appreciated only because of the emergency, others regarded as new opportunities for the development of democratic processes.