A first hand view on e-democracy:
[youtube width=”315″ height=”235″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9RqHEAxN9g[/youtube]
Robert Putnam‘s latest work on ethnic diversity and social capital, which shows a negative correlation between the two, has been published: Putnam, R.D. (2007) “E Pluribus Unum: Diversity and Community in the Twenty-first Century. The 2006 Joahn Skytte Prize Lecture”, Scandinavian Political Studies, 30(2):137-174. The study presents results based on the data from the 2000 Social Capital Community Benchmark Survey. Another survey has been carried out in 2006. It will be interesting to look at the over time changes when the findings from the new survey are made available.
Notwithstanding the debate which will certainly ensue, due to the policy implications of Putnam’s findings, the study shows the importance of looking at the exogenous factors which influence the formation of social capital, measured as social networks of reciprocity and social trust. A review article can be found in the Guardian here.
Andrew Keen‘s new book: The Cult of the Amateur: How Today’s Internet Is Killing Our Culture is now been published both in the US and the UK. To have a sample of his thought provoking thesis, which takes a critical approach to the Web 2.0 revolution, you can also check out a talk he has recently given at Google here.