Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance

Overview
Dr Simon NiemeyerARC Future Fellow

Contact

Centre

Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance

Organisation

Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis at the University of Canberra

Research Interests

Environmental governance, deliberative democracy, mixed methods

Simon Niemeyer is an Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellow whose research covers the broad fields of deliberative democracy and environmental governance, particularly in respect to climate change. His focus is on the forces that shape public opinion and how this can be improved so that the expressed preference of the public better reflects their collective long-term interests. This has guided his research in the direction of exploring the nature of preference change during deliberative minipublics, which is now moving into a phase of understanding the possibility for deliberative preference formation in mass public settings and the institutional features that best facilitate deliberative democratic governance.

Simon completed his PhD at the Australian National University and since then has been the recipient of a number of Australian Research Council Awards, including his current Future Fellowship. As well as his Future Fellowship he is the lead investigator on an ARC project concerning the possibilities for achieving mass public deliberation; a co-investigator on another ARC project on deliberative democracy and achieving just outcomes when adapting to climate change (with David Schlosberg), and a co-investigator on a Swedish Research Council project (with Julia Jennstål) concerning the nature of the deliberative person.

He is currently co-located between the University of Uppsala and the University of Canberra while he develops international links for the next phase of research in assessing deliberativeness of national political settings.

Bio/CV

Academic Qualifications

  • PhD, Social and Political Theory Programme, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University.
  • First Class Honours in Politics and Economics, Griffith University, Australia (University Medal)
  • BSc Environmental Studies, Griffith University, Australia, Major in Politics and Economics. Minor in Ecology

Previous Academic Appointments

  • Jan 2012: Australian Research Council Future Fellow, Political Science and International Relations, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University. (Continued by ongoing position in 2016)
  • Sept 2008-Dec 2011: Research Fellow, Political Science Programme, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University.
  • Sept 2005-Sept 2008: ARC Postoctoral Research Fellow, Political Science Programme, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University. Co-investigator in ARC Discovery project ‘Micropolitics of Deliberation’ involving empirical analysis of theoretical questions related to deliberative democracy.
  • Apr 2004-Sept 2005: Postdoctoral Fellow (Technology in Society), Australian Centre for Advanced Technologies, Division of Exploration and Mining, CSIRO. Conducting research into social and political factors relevant to the take up of technologies and formulation of appropriate decision technologies.
  • Mar 2004-Apr 2004: Research Manager, Tuggeranong Study, Centre for Gambling Research, Regulatory Network, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University.
  • Aug 2002-Jan 2004: Research Fellow, School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Science, University of Birmingham.  Managing research into public perceptions of environmental risk associated with climate change and teaching of environmental management courses.
  • Mar 1998-Apr 2002: Doctoral studies, Social and Political Theory Program, The Australian National University. Six months was spent during 1998–99 as President of the ANU postgraduate association and a year as a Visiting Fellow at Department of Land Economy, University of Cambridge in 2000. Co-researcher on Land and Water funded Citizens’ Juries and Environmental Management project (1999–2001).
  • Jul 1995-Sept 1997: Demonstration tutor/occasional lecturer in Environmental Politics and Environmental Economics, Faculty of Australian Environmental Studies, Griffith University.
  • Apr 1995-Sept 1997: Research Assistant, ‘Arenas of Power’ project, Faculty of Environmental Studies, Griffith University, Assistant to Professor Aynsley Kellow.

Visiting Fellowships:

  • April 2013-June 2013: Department of Government, Uppsala University
  • June-Aug 2012: Nuffield College & Environmental Change Institute. Department of Geography, University of Oxford. Collaboration
  • April-May 2012: Department of Political Science, University of Åbo, Turku, Finland.
  • Sept-Oct 2008: Institute of Political Science, University of Bern.
  • Apr-May 2007: W Maurice Young Centre for Applied Ethics, University of British Columbia.
  • May-June 2006: Department of Politics, Norther Arizona University.
  • Feb-Dec 2000: Department of Land Economy, Cambridge University.
Publications

Journal Articles and Book Chapters

  • Niemeyer, S. J. (Forthcoming 2014). Scaling Up Deliberation to Mass Publics: Harnessing Minipublics in a Deliberative System. Book chapter in: Deliberative Mini-Publics: Practices, promises, pitfalls. K. Grönlund, A. Bächtiger and M. Setälä. Essex, ECPR Press.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2014). "A defence of (deliberative) democracy in the Anthropocene." Ethical Perspectives 21(1): 15–45.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., Batalha, L. and Dryzek, J. S. (2013). Changing dispositions to Australian democracy in the course of the Citizens’ Parliament. Book Chapter in: The Australian Citizens' Parliament and the Future of Deliberative Democracy. L. Carson and J. Gastil. University Park, Penn., Pennsylvania State University Press.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2013). "Democracy and Climate Change: What Can Deliberative Democracy Contribute?" Australian Journal of Politics and History 59(3): 430-449.
  • Boswell, J., Niemeyer, S. J. and Hendricks, C. M. (2013). "Julia Gillard's Citizens' Assembly Proposal for Australia: A Deliberative Democratic Analysis." Australian Journal of Political Science 48(2): 164–178.
  • O'Neil, S., Boykoff, M. T., Niemeyer, S. J. and Day, S. A. (2013). "On the Use of Imagery for Climate Change Engagement." Global Environmental Change 23(2): 413–421.
  • Hobson, K. P. and Niemeyer, S. J. (2013). "What do climate sceptics believe? Discourses of scepticism and their response to deliberation." Public Understanding of Science 22(4): 396-412.
  • Curato, N. and Niemeyer, S. J. (2013). "Reaching out to overcome political apathy: Building participatory capacity through deliberative engagement." Politics & Policy 41(3): 355–383.
  • Curato, N., Niemeyer, S. J., and J. S. Dryzek (2013). "Appreciative and Contestatory Inquiry In Deliberative Forums: Can Group Hugs be Dangerous?" Critical Policy Studies 7(1): 1–17.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., S. Ayirtman and J. HartzKarp (2013). "Q methodology and Analysis of Policy Issues: The Fremantle Bridge Case Study." Operant Subjectivity 36(2): 114–134.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2011). "The Emancipatory Effect of Deliberation: Empirical Lessons from Mini-Publics." Politics & Society 39(1): 103–140.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2011). Intersubjective Reasoning and the Formation of Metaconsensus. Technologies for Supporting Reasoning Communities and Collaborative Decision Making: Cooperative Approaches. J. Yearwood and A. Stranieri. Hershey, Penn., IGI Global: 18–37.
  • Ashworth, P., A. Littleboy, Niemeyer, S.J. et al. (2011). Turning the heat on: Public engagement in Australia’s energy future. Renewable Energy and the Public: From NIMBY to Participation. Devine-Wright. Patrick. London, Earthscan.
  • Bächtiger, A., Niemeyer, S. J.et al. (2010). "Disentangling Diversity in Deliberative Democracy: Competing Theories, Their Empirical Blind-spots, and Complementarities." Journal of Political Philosophy 18(1): 32–63.
  • Secko, D. M., N. Preto, et al. (2009). "Informed consent in biobank research: A deliberative approach to the debate." Social Science and Medicine 68: 781–789.
  • Dryzek, J. S. and Niemeyer, S. J. (2008). "Discursive Representation." American Political Science Review 102(4): 481–494
  • Niemeyer, , S. J., and Dryzek, J. S. (2007). The Ends of Deliberation: Metaconsensus and Intersubjective Rationality as Deliberative Ideals. Swiss Political Science Review 13 (4): 497–526.
  • Bächtiger, A., Steenbergen, M. R., and Niemeyer, S. J. (2007). Deliberative democracy: An introduction. Swiss Political Science Review 13 (4): 485–96.
  • Dryzek, J. S., & Niemeyer, S. J. (2006). Reconciling pluralism and consensus as political ideals. American Journal of Political Science, 50(3).
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2005). Preference transformation through deliberation: Protecting world heritage. In M. Getzner, C. Spash & S. Stagl (Eds.), Developing alternatives for valuing nature (pp. 263–289). Abington: Routledge.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., Petts, J., & Hobson, K. (2005). Rapid climate change and society: Assessing responses and thresholds. Risk Analysis, 25(6), 1443–1456.
  • Petts, J., & Niemeyer, S. J. (2004). Health risk communication and amplification: Learning from the MMR vaccination controversy. Health, Risk and Society, 6(1), 7–23.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2004). Deliberation in the wilderness: Displacing symbolic politics. Environmental Politics, 13(2), 347–372.
  • Goodin, R. E., & Niemeyer, S. J. (2003). When does deliberation begin? Internal reflection versus public discussion in deliberative democracy. Political Studies (4).
  • Niemeyer, S. J., & Spash, C. L. (2001). Environmental valuation analysis, public deliberation, and their pragmatic syntheses: A critical appraisal. Environment and Planning C, 19(4), 567–585.
  • Kellow, Aynsley, and Niemeyer, S. J.. (1999). The development of environmental administration in Queensland and Western Australia: Why are they different? Australian Journal of Political Science 34 (2): 205–222.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., and Tisdell, J. G. (1998). Consumer-based carbon reduction incentives: A proposed mixed incentive for reducing C02 emissions from transport. Economic Analysis and Policy 28 (1): 53-67.

In Progress (submitted and under review)

  • Niemeyer, S. J. (Revise and resubmit). "Intersubjective consistency in deliberative outcomes." European Political Science Review
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (Revise and resubmit). A Deliberative System for Environmental Governance: Lessons from and Possibilities for Minipublics. Ecological Economics
  • Batalha, L., Niemeyer, S. J., Curato, N., Dryzek, J. S., and Gastil, J.(Submitted 2013). "Reason and Affect in Deliberation: How to Throw out the Bathwater and Keep the Baby?" Political Psychology.

Books

  • Dryzek, J. S. (with Niemeyer, S. J.). 2011. Foundations and Frontiers of Deliberative Governance. Oxford University Press.

Conference Presentations

  • Jennstål, J. and Niemeyer, S. J. (2013). Understanding the reflective capabilities of citizens and its role in deliberative capacity. European Consortium for Political Research. Bordeaux.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2012). Building a Deliberative System for Earth Systems Governance: Lessons from and Possibilities for Minipublics. Lund Conference on Earth Systems Governance. Lund. 
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2012). Is Deliberative Democracy All Talk? Developing a deliberative conception of transformation and implications for practice. Deepening Democracy: participation, deliberation or both?, University of Bradford, 12–14 September.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2012). From the minipublic to a deliberative system: is scaling up deliberation possible? Deliberative Democracy in Action. K. Grönlund, A. Bächtiger and M. Setälä. University of Åbo. 7–8 June.
  • Curato, N. and Niemeyer, S. J. (2012). Appreciative and Contestatory Inquiry In Deliberative Forums: Can Group Hugs be Dangerous? Deliberative Democracy in Action. University of Åbo.
  • Batalha, L., Niemeyer, S. J., Curato. N. and Dryzek, J. S. (2012). Group dynamics and deliberative processes: Affective and cognitive aspects. Annual Scientific Meeting of the International Society of Political Psychology, Chicago, IL, 6–9 July.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2011). Intersubjective Consistency in Deliberative Outcomes. Methodological Challenges In Participation Research. J. Font, D. della Porta and Y. Sintomer. 4–5 November. Cordoba, Spain.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2011). In Search of the Deliberative Person: Building the Foundations of an Deliberative System and the Implications for Climate Change Governance. ECPR General Conference. Reykjavic. 
  • Niemeyer, S. J. and K. P. Hobson (2011). Distilling Climate Change for Public Consumption: The Respective Roles of Scenarios and Deliberation. Colorado Conference on Earth System Governance. Colorado State University.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. and K. P. Hobson (2011). Deliberation and Climate Change: What can deliberative democracy contribute to adaptive capacity? ECPR Joint Sessions. St Gallen.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. and K. P. Hobson (2010). Climate Change and the Public Sphere: Mapping individual responses to Australia climate change scenarios and the limits of social adaptation. 2010 Berlin Conference on the Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change: Social dimensions of environmental change and governance. Berlin.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2008). Deliberation and the public sphere: Macro lessons from micro politics. RSSS Theme Seminar. The Australian National University.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. & HartzKarp, J. (2008). Deliberation within large forums: analyzing deliberative success. Deliberative Democracy Theory and Practice Meeting, ANU.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., and Dryzek, J. S. (2007). Intersubjective Rationality: Using interpersonal consistency as a measure of deliberative quality. In ECPSRR Workshop 23. Advanced Empirical Study of Deliberation. Helsinki.
  • Dryzek, John S., and Niemeyer, S. J. (2007). Discursive Representation. Meeting of the American Political Science Association. Chicago. 6-7 Sept.
  • Secko, D. M., N. Preto, Niemeyer, S. J. and M. M. Burgess. (2007). Informed Consent in Biobank Research: Fresh Evidence for the Debate. In One Orgin, One Race, One Earth: Genetics, human rights and the next phase in human evolution. University of Calgary. 15-17 November
  • Sisk, Thomas D., Brett G. Dickson, John Dryzek, Haydee M. Hampton, Tischa Muñoz-Erickson, Shawn Newell, Simon Niemeyer, Jill Rundall, David Schlosberg, and Yaguang Xu. (2007). Ecological discourse and participatory science: Public engagement reduces conflict in development of forest policy. Ecological Restoration in a Changing World. Meeting of the Ecological Society of America. San Jose.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., Anna Littleboy, Kath Fisher and Naomi Boughen. Energy Futures Citizens Panels: Definitive Deliberation? Paper presented at Into the Void: Exploring the Impact of Participatory Processes in research and policy contexts, CSIRO, ANU combined workshop, 27 July 2006.
  • Schlosberg, D., Niemeyer, S. J., Munoz-Erickson, T., Sisk, T., & Dryzek, J. (2005). What does collaboration change? A study of participant values, policy positions, and opinions of others on forest restoration issues in Northern New Mexico, Community Based Collaborative Research Consortium Conference. Sedona, AZ.
  • Dryzek, J. S., & Niemeyer, S. J. (2003). Pluralism and consensus in political deliberation. Paper presented at the Paper presented at the 2003 Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, Philidelphia. 28–31 August.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2000). Environmental politics, symbols and substance: The formation and transformation of preferences in an institutional context, Conference of the International Society of Ecological Economics. The Australian National University.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2000). The ecological economics of environmental choice: Should we value or deliberate? Vienna: European Society for Ecological Economics.

Invited Lectures

  • “What can deliberative democracy can do to improve policy and politics, and how: The experience of deliberative mini publics”, Lecture presented to the Regional Authority for Participation (Autorità Regional per la Partecipazione).. Legislative Palace, Tuscany Region. (Presso la sede del Consiglio della Regione Toscana, Via Cavour 18 – Firenze). 16 October 2012.

Faculty Seminars (selected)

  • “Habermas in the Lab? Observing the emancipatory potential of deliberation via the observation of minipublics. Lecture presented to “Déjeuner Sociologique, Department of Sociology, University of Geneva. 3 October 2012.
  • Habermas in the lab? Observing the emancipatory potential of deliberation via participation in minipublics. Lecture presented to Democracy: Structures, Performance, Challenges Research Unit, Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung. 23 August 2012.
  • In search of the deliberative citizen: Can deliberative democracy be achieved in mass publics? Lecture presented to the Political Science Department, Åbo Akademi, Turku. 30 May 2012.
  • What can deliberative democracy do to improve the response to climate change?, Lecture presented to the Department of Geography, University of Melbourne 16 August 2011.

Reports and Working Papers

  • Niemeyer, S. J., Felicetti, a. and Ruggero O. D. (2012). Preliminary Report: Valsamoggia Citizens Initiative Review. Canberra, Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2012). Building the Foundations of Deliberative Democracy: The Deliberative Person. Canberra, Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance, The Australian National University.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., K. P. Hobson, et al. (2011). Participant Recommendations and Report: Climate Change and the Public Sphere Project. Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance. Working paper 2011/4.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2010). Analysis Of The Act Tree Management Opinion Charting Exercise: Conducted as part of the Tree Investigation Strategic Communications Workshop. Canberra, Officer for the Commissioner of Sustainability and the Environment, ACT. (Report tabled in the ACT Legislative Assembly).
  • Niemeyer, S. J., K. P. Hobson, et al. (2010). Climate Change and the Public Sphere: Public Responses to Climate Change and Governing Adaptation, with specific reference to the ACT and Goulburn-Mulwaree regions. Canberra, Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance, The Australian National University.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. and K. P. Hobson (2010). Is Deliberative Democracy the Solution to Governing Climate Change? Evidence from the Field. Canberra, Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance, The Australian National University.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2009). The Emancipatory Effect of Deliberation: Empirical Lessons from Mini-Publics. Canberra, Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance. Working Paper 2009/5. 
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2008). New Mexico ForestERA: Analysis of a Citizen and Stakeholder Deliberations on Forest Restoration Issues in Northern New Mexico. Canberra, Deliberative Democracy Research Group, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University.
  • Ercan, S. A., and Niemeyer, S. J. (2008). Achieving Success in Large Scale Deliberation: Analysis of the Fremantle Bridge Community Engagement Process. Canberra: Deliberative Democracy Research Group, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2007). Report of the analysis of the UBC Biobank Deliberative Process. Canberra, Deliberative Democracy Research Group, Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University.
  • Littleboy, Anna, Naomi Boughen, Simon Niemeyer, and Kath Fisher. 2006. Societal Uptake of Alternative Energy Futures: Final Report. Newcastle, NSW: CSIRO Energy Transformed Research Flagship.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., Littleboy, A., Fisher, K., & Boughen, N. (2005). Societal uptake of alternative energy futures – interim report. Pullenvale: CSIRO, Division of Exploration and Mining.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., & Littleboy, A. (2005). Societal uptake of energy technologies: A framework for examining social responses to energy technologies in Australia energy futures (Research Report). Pullenvale: CSIRO, Division of Exploration and Mining.
  • Niemeyer, S. J., & Blamey, R. K. (2005). The Far North Queensland Citizens' Jury (Research report). Canberra: Land and Water Australia.
  • Niemeyer, S., J., Petts, J., Hobson, K., & McGregor, G. (2004). Understanding thresholds in human behaviour and responses to rapid climate change (Working Paper 04/01). Birmingham: Centre for Environmental Research & Training, School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham.
  • Niemeyer, S., J., Petts, et al. (2004). Predicting Responses to rapid climate change. Final report to the ESRC. Birmingham, School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2002). Deliberation in the wilderness: Transforming policy preferences through discourse. Unpublished PhD, The Australian National University, Canberra.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (2000). Cogito ergo sylva amo: The coevolution of science and environmental values (Environment Series No. 13). Cambridge: Cambridge Research for the Environment, Department of Land Economy, Cambridge University.
  • Niemeyer, S. J. (1998). Consumer-based carbon reduction incentives. Canberra: Ecological Economics Program, Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies, The Australian National University.
Research Projects & Grants
  • (2014-2017) Swedish Research Council Research Grant, “The Deliberative Person: How, When and Where to Citizens Deliberate” SEK 5,800,000 (Lead CI with Julia Jennstål)
  • (2012-2015) ARC Future Fellowship Proposal FT110100871, “Deliberative Democracy and Climate Change: Building the Foundations of an Adaptive System”. AU$629,090. (Recipient)
  • (2012-2014) ARC Discovery Grant  DP120103976 ,“Deliberative Democracy in the Public Sphere: Achieving Deliberative Outcomes in mass publics”. AU$320,357. (Lead CI with John Dryzek, David Schlosberg, Kersty Hobson, Robert Goodin, Andre Bachtiger, Maija Setala).
  • (2012-2014) ARC Discovery Grant DP120104797, “Rethinking Climate Justice in an Age of Adaptation: Capabilities, Local Variation, and Public Deliberation”. AU$250,000. (with David Schlosberg, Lead CI)
  • (2008-2010) ARC Discovery Grant DP0879092, “Social Adaptation to Climate Change in the Australian Public Sphere: A Comparison of Individual and Group Deliberative Responses to Scenarios of Future Climate Change” AU$378,500. Lead CI on the interdisciplinary team for this project with Paul t’Hart’; Will Steffen (Director of the Fenner School of Environment and Society); Kersty Hobson (RSPAS) ; Janette Lindsay (Fenner); Brendan Mackey (Fenner) and Michael Hutchinson (Fenner).
  • (2008-2010) ARC Linkage Grant LP0882714, “Creating an Analysing a Citizens’ Parliament: Exploring the Public’s Deliberative Capacity”, with John Dryzek, Lyn Carson (USyd), Janette HartzKarp (Murdoch), Ian Marsh (USyd) and Luca Belgiorno-Nettis (newDemocracy). AU$291,575 from ARC, AU$418,000 from the New Democracy Foundation, Total AU$709,575
  • (2009-2010) eResearch Grant, “Quantitative Deliberative Analysis: Development of software program”, College of Arts and Social Sciences, Dean's E-Research And Digital Scholarship Initiative. $AU 12,000
  • (2005-2007) ARC Discovery Grant DP0558573, “The Micropolitics of Deliberation”. With John Dryzek (started late so extended into 2008). AU$365,000.
  • (2004-2005) CSIRO Energy Flagship Programme, “Societal uptake of alternative energy futures”, (With Anna Littleboy). AU$400,000
  • (2003-2004) Economic and Social Research Council (UK). Environment and New Behaviour Opportunities Programme. “Predicting thresholds of social behavioural responses to rapid climate change” (With Judith Petts, Kersty Hobson, Glenn McGregor). £32,748.
  • (1999-2002) Land and Water Australia. Social and Institutional Research Program. “Citizens’ Juries and Environmental Valuation” (With Mick Common and Russell Blamey). AU$150,000
  • (1998-2002) Land and Water Scholar. Industry Scholarship award for Doctoral Studies at the School of Social Sciences, Australian National University. AU$75,000
  • (2000) Preparation of successful EU Framework 3 proposal titled Consultative Institutions and Values In a Changing Society (CIVICS). Approx €500,000.
PhD Supervision

Areas of Supervision:

  • Environmental governance
  • Deliberative democracy
  • Mixed methods

Involvement in PhD Supervisory Panels:

 

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