Louis-Gaëtan Giraudet ; Bénédicte Apouey ; Hazem Arab ; Simon Baeckelandt ; Philippe Begout ; Nicolas Berghmans ; Nathalie Blanc ; Jean-Yves Boulin ; Eric Buge ; Dimitri Courant ; Amy Dahan ; Adrien Fabre ; Jean-Michel Fourniau ; Maxime Gaborit ; Laurence Granchamp ; Hélène Guillemot ; Laurent Jeanpierre ; Hélène Landemore ; Jean-François Laslier ; Antonin Macé ; Claire Mellier- Wilson ; Sylvain Mounier ; Théophile Pénigaud ; Ana Povoas ; Christiane Rafidinarivo ; Bernard Reber ; Romane Rozencwajg ; Philippe Stamenkovic ; Selma Tilikete ; Solène Tournus
Citizens’ assemblies are gaining traction as a means to address complex issues such as climate change. We report on our unique experience in observing debates among the 150 members of the French Citizens’ Convention for Climate and highlight its implications for both climate action and the science of deliberation. We note that France took an original approach characterized by (i) sustained interactions between citizens and the steering board; (ii) a significant input from technical and legal experts; (iii) and a strong emphasis on creating consensus, leaving little room for expressing dissent. This resulted in the citizens approving 149 measures, 146 of which President Macron committed to follow up on. Yet as implementation is now under discussion, the promise that measures would pass “unfiltered” appears increasingly questioned.