Professor Graham Smith

Professor of Politics

+44 20 7911 5000 ext 68932
309 Regent Street London W1B 2HW
By appointment

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Politics and International Relations | Department

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I am Professor of Politics and Director of the Centre for the Study of Democracy (CSD) in the Department of Politics and International Relations. Previously I was Professor of Politics and Head of Department at the University of Southampton, where I worked from 1999 to 2012, and Research Fellow at the University of Strathclyde from 1997.

My first degree is in Chemistry, my Masters in Environmental Science, my PhD in green political theory. It's a long story!

I am Senior Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies, Potsdam and Honarary Fellow at the Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity. In 2010 I was a Fernand Braudel Senior Fellow at the European University Institute in Florence and in the Fall 2013, Senior Visiting Scholar on the Democracy Program at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, Harvard Kennedy School.

Outside of academia, I am Chair of the Foundation for Democracy and Sustainable Development (FDSD).

My main research interests are in democratic theory and practice (particularly democratic innovations), climate politics and the third sector/social economy.

Watch a video of my Inaugural Lecture on Democratic Innovations on YouTube.

I am the convenor of the second year module Democratic Innovations, an optional modules for all students studying Politics, International Relations and Development. It uses a novel assessment method: writing a new case for the global research platform Participedia.

PhD supervision

I am an experienced PhD supervisor and am interested in supervising students in areas of democratic theory and practice and/or climate/environmental politics.

I am Director of Studies for the following doctoral research students:

Hans Asenbaum, ‘Power, Identity and Anonymity in Digital Democratic Innovations'

Emmeline Cooper, 'Pension Funds, Sustainable Investing and the Promise of Innovative Corporate Governance'

Martin King, ‘Deliberation and Decision Making Online: Evaluating Platform Design’

Rabea Willers, 'Athens 2.0 or Trojan Horse: Digital Civic Engagement in Smart Cities'

My current research focuses on three main areas. First, on democratic innovations - institutions designed to increase and deepen citizen participation in the political decision-making process. This work builds on the theoretical approach initially developed in my book Democratic Innovations: Designing Institutions for Citizen Participation.

I am Chair of the Research Committee of Participedia, a global network and knowledge platform for democratic innovations, including research groups at the Universities of British Columbia and Harvard. The network is currently funded by SSHRC (Canada), with earlier research on practitioner engagement funded by the ESRC Imagine Connected Communities consortium.

I am Principal Investigator of the Scholio project funded by the University of Connecticut’s Humanities Institute and the John Templeton Foundation. The project is using experimental methods to understand how news media comments platforms can be designed more effectively to reduce dysfunctional behaviours and promote more reasonable and civil dialogue.

I am also an international co-investigator for the 'Associational democracy: accountable autonomy, participatory bias or vicious circle?' project funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness. This is led by Joan Font at the IESA. The same team recently completed the innovative Cherry-picking: The Results of Participatory Processes.

Previously, I was co-investigator on the recent ESRC funded Democracy Matters project that organised pilot constitutional assemblies on English devolution – I was Academic Director of Assembly South. The project won the 2016 Political Studies Association Democratic Innnovation Award.

Secondly, I am combining my interests on democratic theory and institutional design with environmental politics on a book project tentatively titled Long Term Democracy: Institutional Innovation, Future Generations and Climate Change. This will investigate the drivers of short-termism in democratic systems (democratic myopia) and potential institutional remedies. This research feeds into and is informed by my work as Chair of the Foundation for Democracy and Sustainable Development.

A final area of research focuses on the relationship between modes of environmental governance and the shaping of pro-environmental social practices. I have led two significant RCUK funded projects that have investigated the role of third sector/community organisations in promoting low-carbon practices. The Role of Community-based Initiatives in Energy Saving was an interdisciplinary project engaged in experimental and comparative research that ran from 2010-2014. I also co-directed the environmental stream of research in the Third Sector Research Centre.

2017

Citizen participation and changing governance: cases of devolution in England (2017)
Smith, G., Prosser, B., Renwick, A., Giovanni, A., Sandford, M., Flinders, M., Jennings, W., Spada, G., Stocker, G. and Ghose, K. 2017. Citizen participation and changing governance: cases of devolution in England. Politics and Policy.

2016

Qu’apporte l’étude des town meetings à la quête d’une démocratie plus participative et délibérative? (2016)
Bryan, F.W., Keith, W.W., Kloppenberg, J.T., Mansbridge, J.J., Morrell, M.E. and Smith, G. 2016. Qu’apporte l’étude des town meetings à la quête d’une démocratie plus participative et délibérative? Participations. Revue de sciences sociales sur la démocratie et la citoyenneté. 15 (2), pp. 203-220.
Tracing the impact of proposals from participatory processes: methodological challenges and substantive lessons (2016)
Font, J., Pasadas del Amo, S. and Smith, G. 2016. Tracing the impact of proposals from participatory processes: methodological challenges and substantive lessons. Journal of Public Deliberation. 12 (1), p. Article 3.

2015

Identifying and explaining framing strategies of low carbon lifestyle movement organisations (2015)
Buchs, M., Wallbridge, R., Saunders, C., Smith, G. and Bardsley, N. 2015. Identifying and explaining framing strategies of low carbon lifestyle movement organisations. Global Environmental Change. 35 (Nov), p. 2015.
The Potential of Participedia as a Crowdsourcing Tool for Comparative Analysis of Democratic Innovations (2015)
Smith, G., Gastil, John and Richards Jr, R.C. 2015. The Potential of Participedia as a Crowdsourcing Tool for Comparative Analysis of Democratic Innovations. Policy and Internet. 7 (2), p. 243–262.
Survey Article: Deliberation, Democracy, and the Systemic Turn (2015)
Owen, D. and Smith, G. 2015. Survey Article: Deliberation, Democracy, and the Systemic Turn. Journal of Political Philosophy. 23 (2), p. 213–234.
‘It helped me sort of face the end of the world’: the role of emotions for third sector climate change engagement initiatives (2015)
Buchs, M., Hinton, E. and Smith, G. 2015. ‘It helped me sort of face the end of the world’: the role of emotions for third sector climate change engagement initiatives. Environmental Values. 24 (5), pp. 621-640.

2014

Ends, means, beginnings: environmental technocracy, ecological deliberation or embodied disagreement (2014)
Machin, A. and Smith, G. 2014. Ends, means, beginnings: environmental technocracy, ecological deliberation or embodied disagreement. Ethical Perspectives. 21 (1), pp. 47 -72.
Beyond the activist ghetto: a deductive blockmodelling approach to understanding the relationship between contact with environmental organisations and public attitudes and behaviour (2014)
Saunders, C., Buchs, M., Papafragkou, A., Wallbridge, R. and Smith, G. 2014. Beyond the activist ghetto: a deductive blockmodelling approach to understanding the relationship between contact with environmental organisations and public attitudes and behaviour. Social Movement Studies: Journal of Social, Cultural and Political Protest. 13 (1), pp. 158-177.

2013

Taking political engagement online: an experimental analysis of asynchronous discussion forums (2013)
Smith, G., John, P. and Sturgis, P. 2013. Taking political engagement online: an experimental analysis of asynchronous discussion forums. Political Studies. 61 (4), pp. 709-730.
Mapping the environmental third sector in England: a distinctive field of activity? (2013)
Clifford, D., Geyne-Rajme, F., Smith, G., Edwards, R., Buchs, M. and Saunders, C. 2013. Mapping the environmental third sector in England: a distinctive field of activity? Voluntary Sector Review. 4 (2), pp. 241-264.
Environmental management systems and the third sector: exploring weak adoption in the UK (2013)
Edwards, R., Smith, G. and Buchs, M. 2013. Environmental management systems and the third sector: exploring weak adoption in the UK. Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy. 31 (1), pp. 119-133.

2012

Towards a comparative analysis of democratic innovations: lessons from a small-n fsQCA of participatory budgeting (2012)
Ryan, M. and Smith, G. 2012. Towards a comparative analysis of democratic innovations: lessons from a small-n fsQCA of participatory budgeting. Revista Internacional de Sociología (RiS). 70 (Extra2), pp. 89-120.
Associative democracy and the social economy: exploring the regulatory challenge (2012)
Smith, G. and Teasdale, S. 2012. Associative democracy and the social economy: exploring the regulatory challenge. Economy and Society. 41 (2), pp. 151-176.
Legislating for a big society? The case of the public services (social enterprise and social value) bill in England (2012)
Teasdale, S., Alcock, P. and Smith, G. 2012. Legislating for a big society? The case of the public services (social enterprise and social value) bill in England. Public Money and Management. 32 (3), pp. 201-208.
Machiavellian democratic innovations: McCormick’s people’s tribunate (2012)
Smith, G. and Owen, D. 2012. Machiavellian democratic innovations: McCormick’s people’s tribunate. The Good Society. 20 (2), pp. 203-215.
Navigating the perfect storm: research stategies for socialecological systems in a rapidly evolving world (2012)
Dearing, J.A., Bullock, S., Contanza, R., Dawson, T.P., Edwards, M.E., Poppy, G.M. and Smith, G. 2012. Navigating the perfect storm: research stategies for socialecological systems in a rapidly evolving world. Environmental Management. 49 (4), pp. 767-775.
Organizing deliberation: the perspectives of professional participation practitioners in Britain and Germany (2012)
Cooper, E. and Smith, G. 2012. Organizing deliberation: the perspectives of professional participation practitioners in Britain and Germany. Journal of Public Deliberation. 8 (1), p. Article 3.

2011

Survey article: Democratic innovations: bringing theory and practice into dialogue (2011)
Smith, G. 2011. Survey article: Democratic innovations: bringing theory and practice into dialogue. Philosophy Compass. 6 (12), pp. 895-901.
Ekonomia społeczna, przedsiębiorstwospołeczne i teoria d emokracji stowarzyszeniowej (2011)
Smith, G. and Teasdale, S. 2011. Ekonomia społeczna, przedsiębiorstwospołeczne i teoria d emokracji stowarzyszeniowej. Ekonomia Spoteczna. 2 (3), pp. 121-137.

2009

Revitalising politics through democratic innovation? (2009)
Smith, G. 2009. Revitalising politics through democratic innovation? Representation. 45 (3), pp. 259-264.
Deliberativna demokracija i javnosti u malom (deliberative democracy and mini-publics) (2009)
Smith, G. 2009. Deliberativna demokracija i javnosti u malom (deliberative democracy and mini-publics). Croatian Political Science Review. 3/4, pp. 27-58.
Nudge nudge, think think: two strategies for changing civic behaviour (2009)
John, P., Smith, G. and Stoker, G. 2009. Nudge nudge, think think: two strategies for changing civic behaviour. Political Quarterly. 80 (3), pp. 361-370.

2008

Teaching citizenship in higher education (2008)
Smith, G., Ottewill, R., Jubb, E., Sperling, E. and Wyman, M. 2008. Teaching citizenship in higher education. European Political Science. 7, pp. 135-143.

2005

The theory and practice of group representation: reflections on the governance of race equality in Birmingham (2005)
Smith, G. and Stephenson, S. 2005. The theory and practice of group representation: reflections on the governance of race equality in Birmingham. Public Administration. 83 (2), pp. 323-343.
Green citizenship and the social economy (2005)
Smith, G. 2005. Green citizenship and the social economy. Environmental Politics. 14 (2), pp. 273-289.

2004

Building social capital in city politics: scope and limitations at the inter-organisational level (2004)
Smith, G., Maloney, W. and Stoker, G. 2004. Building social capital in city politics: scope and limitations at the inter-organisational level. Political Studies. 52 (3), pp. 508-530.

2001

Taking deliberation seriously: institutional design and green politics (2001)
Smith, G. 2001. Taking deliberation seriously: institutional design and green politics. Environmental Politics. 10 (3), pp. 72-93.

2000

Social capital and urban governance: adding a more contextualized ‘top-down’ perspective (2000)
Maloney, W., Smith, G. and Stoker, G. 2000. Social capital and urban governance: adding a more contextualized ‘top-down’ perspective. Political Studies. 48 (4), pp. 802-820.
Citizens' juries and deliberative democracy (2000)
Smith, G. and Wales, C. 2000. Citizens' juries and deliberative democracy. Political Studies. 48 (1), pp. 51-65.

1999

The theory and practice of citizens’ juries (1999)
Smith, G. and Wales, C. 1999. The theory and practice of citizens’ juries. Policy and Politics. 27 (3), pp. 295-308.

2016

Democracy Matters: Lessons from the 2015 Citizens' Assemblies on English Devolution (2016)
Flinders, M., Ghose, K., Jennings, W., Molloy, E., Prosser, B., Renwick, A., Smith, G. and Spada, P. 2016. Democracy Matters: Lessons from the 2015 Citizens' Assemblies on English Devolution. Democracy Matters.

2009

Empowering communities to influence local decision making: systematic review of the evidence (2009)
Pratchett, L., Durose, C., Lowndes, V., Smith, G., Stoker, G. and Wales, C. 2009. Empowering communities to influence local decision making: systematic review of the evidence. London Department for Communities and Local Government.

2005

Beyond the ballot: 57 democratic innovations from around the world (2005)
Smith, G. 2005. Beyond the ballot: 57 democratic innovations from around the world. The Power Inquiry.

2014

Defining Mini-Publics (2014)
Ryan, M. and Smith, G. 2014. Defining Mini-Publics. in: Kimmo Grönlund André Bächtiger Maija Setälä (ed.) Deliberative Mini-Publics: Involving Citizens in the Democratic Process Colchester ECPR Press. pp. 9-26

2013

Designing democratic innovations at the European level: lessons from the experiments (2013)
Smith, G. 2013. Designing democratic innovations at the European level: lessons from the experiments. in: Kies, R. and Nanz, P. (ed.) Is Europe listening to us? Successes and failures of EU citizen consultations Ashgate. pp. 201-216

2012

The European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI): a new institution for empowering Europe’s citizens? (2012)
Smith, G. 2012. The European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI): a new institution for empowering Europe’s citizens? in: Dougan, M., Shuibhne, N.N. and Spaventa, E. (ed.) Empowerment and disempowerment of the European citizen Oxford Hart.
Deliberative democracy and mini-publics (2012)
Smith, G. 2012. Deliberative democracy and mini-publics. in: Geissel, B. and Newton, K. (ed.) Evaluating democratic innovations: curing the democratic malaise? London Routledge. pp. 90-111

2011

Putting democracy into welfare provision (2011)
Smith, G. 2011. Putting democracy into welfare provision. in: Westall, A. (ed.) Revisiting associative democracy London Lawrence & Wishart.

2005

Democratic deliberation and environmental policy: opportunities and barriers in Britain (2005)
Smith, G. 2005. Democratic deliberation and environmental policy: opportunities and barriers in Britain. in: Paehlke, R. and Torgerson, D. (ed.) Managing leviathan: environmental politics and the administrative state Ontario Broadview.

2004

Voluntary organisations and the generation of social capital (2004)
Stoker, G., Smith, G., Maloney, W. and Young, S. 2004. Voluntary organisations and the generation of social capital. in: Boddy, M. and Parkinson, M. (ed.) City matters: competitiveness, cohesion and urban governance Bristol Policy Press. pp. 389-406
Liberal democracy and the shaping of environmentally enlightened citizens (2004)
Smith, G. 2004. Liberal democracy and the shaping of environmentally enlightened citizens. in: Levy, Y. and Wissenburg, M. (ed.) Liberal democracy and environmentalism: the end of environmentalism? London Routledge. pp. 139-152
How can the weaknesses of deliberative decision making be overcome? (2004)
Smith, G. 2004. How can the weaknesses of deliberative decision making be overcome? in: Blowers, A. (ed.) Deliberative democracy and decision making for radioactive waste: a report for the HM Government-sponsored Commission on Radioactive Waste Management (CoRWM) Commission on Radioactive Waste Management (CoRWM).

2001

Social capital and the city (2001)
Maloney, W., Smith, G. and Stoker, G. 2001. Social capital and the city. in: Edwards, B., Foley, M.W. and Diani, M. (ed.) Beyond Tocqueville: civil society and the social capital debate in comparative perspective University of New England Press. pp. 83-98

2000

Toward deliberative institutions (2000)
Smith, G. 2000. Toward deliberative institutions. in: Saward, M. (ed.) Democratic innovation: deliberation, representation and association London Routledge. pp. 29-39

2012

Politics and the environment: from theory to practice. 3rd edition (2012)
Connelly, J., Smith, G., Benson, D. and Saunders, C. 2012. Politics and the environment: from theory to practice. 3rd edition. London Routledge.

2011

Nudge nudge, think think: experimenting with ways to change civic behaviour (2011)
John, P., Cotterill, S., Richardson, L., Moseley, A., Smith, G., Stoker, G. and Wales, C. 2011. Nudge nudge, think think: experimenting with ways to change civic behaviour. London Bloomsbury Academic.

2010

Prospects for citizenship (2010)
Stoker, G., Armstrong, C., Banya, M., Mason, A., McGee, D., McGrew, T., Owen, D., Saunders, C. and Smith, G. 2010. Prospects for citizenship. London Bloomsbury Academic.

2009

Democratic innovations: designing institutions for citizen participation (2009)
Smith, G. 2009. Democratic innovations: designing institutions for citizen participation. Cambridge Cambridge University Press.

2003

Deliberative democracy and the environment (2003)
Smith, G. 2003. Deliberative democracy and the environment. London Routledge.

2002

Politics and the environment: from theory to practice (2002)
Smith, G. and Connelly, J. 2002. Politics and the environment: from theory to practice. London Routledge.

1999

Politics and the envronment: from theory to practice (1999)
Smith, G. and Connelly, J. 1999. Politics and the envronment: from theory to practice. London Routledge.

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