The development of new ICT has produced a remarkable shift from the concept of representation, which is the cornerstone of representative democracies. New technologies, the are offering a wide array of opportunities for direct political participation of citizens, political groups and institutions.
A modern e-democracy should allow citizens to express their opinion over different issues in their community, especially on lower levels of government (mayoralty, services offices among others); which tends to be closer to the day to day routines of citizens.
Taking these concepts in account, the University of Bologna has designed a smartphone app that allows citizens to report problems they encounter in their daily lives. This tool allows ordinary people to express priorities and, in some way, help shape the political agenda. This is just but one of the many examples of direct democracy that are possible thanks to the new technologies.
The project was developed by Vincenzo Alfano PhD candidate in Governance, Management and Economics at the Parthenope University, Italy.
Technically, the instrument has been developed as an app for smartphones supported by a website that would allow managing the voting system.