Forms of direct democracy

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  • Forms of direct democracy
    • Athenian
      • Democracy first used in Ancient Greece
        • People gathered in cities to listen to the speeches of their leaders and then vote
      • Not possible today as populations involved are much larger
    • E-petitions
      • The official government website enables citizens to sign petitions
        • If a petition reaches 10,000 signatures parliament will consider debating the issue
    • Initiatives
      • (variation of a referendum)
      • People themselves decide whether a referendum should be held
        • A citizen must petition for a popular vote
          • Requires a certain number of signatures
      • Widely used in USA
    • Recall of MPs act 2015 (UK)
      • Allows constituents to recall their MP and trigger a by-election
        • The petition is open for 8 weeks
          • If at least 10% of the electorate sign it then the seat is declared vacant and a by-election is triggered
        • Conditions:
          • MP is sentenced to prison term
          • MP is suspended from the House of Commons for at least 21 days
    • Referenda
      • A vote on a single issue that demands a yes/no answer (sometimes multiple options)
      • Governments and parliament decide when they are used


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