The renowned political scholars who contribute to this volume outline both the theory and practice of so-called extra-formal democracy, wherein societal governance is more accurately described as a network activity and citizens, politicians, public administrators and other professionals act together on issues or problems that are defined as public. This new and complex form of democracy--explored here in three unique settings: the United States, the Netherlands, and Demark--is increasingly regarded as an achievable vision for a multi-faceted theory of government.
This is a timely book! On the domestic front, reactions to terrorism threaten democracy. Internationally, globalism conflates capitalism with democracy to the benefit of capitalism and to the detriment of democracy. Top-to-bottom approaches to democracy are fatally flawed. Horizontal or bottom-to-top, situational, relational, and pragmatic alternatives need to be revived. Together, the authors in Tampering with Tradition provide an intellectually sophisticated foundation for that revival.--Larry S. Luton, Eastern Washington University