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Political Engagement Through Tools for Argumentation

Summary: Political Engagement Through Tools for
and Katie ATKINSON a
Department of Computer Science, University of Liverpool, UK.
In this paper we discuss the development of tools to support a system for e-
democracy that is based upon and makes use of existing theories of argument rep-
resentation and evaluation. The system is designed to gather public opinions on
political issues from which conclusions can be drawn concerning how government
policies are presented, justified and viewed by the users of the system. We describe
how the original prototype has been augmented by the addition of well motivated
tools to enable it to handle multiple debates and to provide analyses of the opinions
submitted, from which it is possible to pinpoint specific grounds for disagreement
on an issue. The tool set now supports both argumentation schemes and argumenta-
tion frameworks to provide representation and evaluation facilities. We contrast our
system with existing fielded approaches designed to facilitate public consultation
on political issues and show the particular benefits that our approach can bring in
attempting to improve the quality of such engagement online.


Source: Atkinson, Katie - Department of Computer Science, University of Liverpool


Collections: Computer Technologies and Information Sciences