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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Canadian Democracy from the Ground Up

Perceptions and Performance

Canada is often held up as an example of a healthy democracy. However, the Canadian public is less enthusiastic about the way our democracy works. This first-of-a-kind book approaches the “democratic deficit” from the perspective of everyday Canadians and assesses the performance of Parliament and the media in light of their perceptions and expectations. In doing so, a number of chapters highlight the disjuncture between perceptions and performance. Canadian Democracy from the Ground Up is essential for anyone who would like to learn how to build a better democracy – one that meets the expectations of the Canadian public.


320 pages


Table of Contents

Foreword / Michael MacMillan and Alison Loat

Introduction / Elisabeth Gidengil and Heather Bastedo

1 Attitudes toward Democratic Norms and Practices: Canada in Comparative Perspective / Lawrence LeDuc and Jon H. Pammett

2 Canadians’ Evaluations of MPs: Performance Matters / Nick Ruderman

3 Repertoire-Building or Elite-Challenging? Understanding Political Engagement in Canada / Michael A. Painter-Main

4 Outsiders: Agency and the Non-Engaged / Heather Bastedo, Wayne Chu, and Jane Hilderman

5 Media and Political Inequality / Quinn Albaugh and Christopher Waddell

6 The Story behind the Story: Evaluating the Content of Political News / Heather Bastedo, Quinn Albaugh, and Alex Marland

7 Social Media and Agenda Setting / Wayne Chu and Fred Fletcher

8 Representing Canadians: Is the 41st Parliament Still a Vertical Mosaic? / Livianna Tossutti and Jane Hilderman

9 MPs on the Home Front: How Constituency Characteristics Influence Representational Approaches / Munroe Eagles, Royce Koop, and Alison Loat

10 Democratic Responsiveness in the House of Commons / Kelly Blidook

11 A Tale of Two Perspectives: Election Promises and Government Actions in Canada / François Pétry

Conclusion: Taking Stock of Canadian Democracy from the Ground Up / Elisabeth Gidengil and Heather Bastedo

Appendix: Samara 2012 Citizens’ Survey Methodology

Index

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