Citizens, members of the French Citizens’ Convention for Climate.
My name is Alexia, I’m 23 years old, I’m a student in Montpellier, France, and I’m originally from Guadeloupe. I was drawn to participate in the first citizen convention for the climate in France, in order to find solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while respecting social justice. I was part of the group “feeding ourselves” in which the issues of organic agriculture, healthy food, food policy, imports, fishing and especially the crime of ecocide were discussed. This question concerns me personally because in Guadeloupe the use of a pesticide causes health and environmental problems. I would like to sensitize a maximum of young people so that they can understand that we must change our habits to have a more virtuous and environmentally friendly lifestyle.
Eloise, 18 years old, from Dunkerque, a student in her first year of access to health studies, defends the Climate cause with conviction. From a very young age, she was made aware of nature by her grandfather, a gardener and community activist, president of the MNLE (Mouvement National de Lutte pour l’Environnement Nord-Pas-de-Calais). As a member of a scouting movement, the fight for the respect of nature and life quickly became obvious. Drawn by lot the year of her scientific high school graduation to participate as a Citizen in the Climate Convention aiming at proposing measures to reduce CO2 emissions by 40% by 2030, she acquired a base of knowledge, developed her critical sense and sharpened her arguments. In 2021, she creates with her brother the branch of the Youth for Climate Dunkerque movement.
William Aucant is a 34 year old architect and urbanist from Nantes. He is a PhD student at the GERPHAU Laboratory. He has worked in Paris, Rotterdam and Berlin to observe other ways of making the city. He is a randomly selected member of the Citizens’ Climate Convention (CCC). He participated in the work of the thematic group “Se Loger”, particularly on the issues of thermal renovation of buildings and the limit to urban sprawl.
Pascal Beulque is a retired professional airplane pilot. He lives in central France, in the countryside. He is aware that “the ecological transition is becoming a global priority and that to achieve it, we must involve all citizens, because the policies are too lax. The future is in our hands, let’s seize it”.
Mélanie Blanchetot, 37 years old, from Nanterre in the Hauts de Seine. Mother of a 10 year old daughter, I am a manager in an international event agency. I am one of the 150 citizens chosen at random for the CCC (Se Nourrir group).
I am 57 years old, I live in Saint-Gervais-les-Bains, in the Mont Blanc region, I am a business manager, self-taught. My job is the recycling of plastic materials from industrial production scraps and/or selective collections. In 1996, I created one of the very first plastic waste processing centers. The site processes more than 15,000 tons of material per year. In 2008, I sold my company to the SUEZ Environment group and joined their team as General Manager of the plastics recycling department at SITA RECYCLAGE. I left the group in 2012. In 2013 I created the company EDEAL, specialized in the trading of secondary plastic raw materials. I like to repeat that despite my job, my knowledge of the climate stopped at the end of my garden! Fortunately, the Citizens’ Climate Convention will bring me this essential plus to live better tomorrow and the commitment that it is necessary to have for our future.
Agnès Catoire, 43 years old, I have been laid off since my participation in the Citizens’ Climate Convention; I was previously a payroll manager. Today, I am considering a skills assessment and training in the environmental field. The first time I was contacted to participate in the Citizens’ Climate Convention, I thought it was a hoax. When I was called back, 3 weeks later, I didn’t hesitate for a second before accepting. I was already sensitive to ecology and, as a mother, very enthusiastic about the idea of taking concrete action for the planet and future generations. I was part of the “consume” group. One of the key measures on which I worked in particular: the regulation of advertising. I was also very involved in the revision of Article 1 and the preamble of the Constitution in order to integrate a fundamental principle that would raise the protection of the environment and the ecosystem to constitutional status.
A home health aide, I am one of 150 people drawn to participate in the Citizens’ Climate Convention in the summer of 2019. I co-chaired the association of the 150 until the Climate-Resilience bill arrived in Parliament. I have been mayor of Souvigné-sur-Sarthe, a village of 630 inhabitants, since May 2020.
Jean-Michel De Ninis
Jean-Michel de Nini is living in Saint-Raphaël, married, 2 children. He is retired from the SNCF where ha was chef then director of a holiday village. Running mate on the environmentalist list « my city my planet » in the municipal election (10% with 2 elected councilors). Hobbies : macro photography, cooking, hiking, taichi.
My name is Guy Kulitza and I am the age of Asterix and the Cuban revolution. I have 4 children (remarried) and 7 grandchildren. I live in a small village in Haute-Vienne. Retired from a public service to which I remain strongly attached, I naively thought that my active life was behind me. But that was without counting on this singularity: the Citizens’ Climate Convention. I realized how much more disastrous the record was than I could have imagined and I understood the urgency of acting to ensure a safe and peaceful future for future generations. I found in the CCC a purpose for my remaining years in this world: to bring ecocide and planetary limits into law.
My name is Claire Morcant, I am 49 years old, I am a local civil servant (Metropole Aix Marseille Provence / Economic development and regional planning) in Marseille. I was drawn in August 2019 to participate in the Citizen’s Climate Convention. I was part of the “Consume” group. I still continue today, with other citizens, to defend the measures of the CCC and to testify of my unique experience both in terms of participatory democracy and ecological transition, through the association “Les 150” (always very solicited) of which I am the Treasurer.
27 years old at the time of the drawing of lots for the Citizens’ Convention, Amandine Roggeman is young and active in the cultural and philanthropic sector in Paris. After studying Political Science and Art History, she worked in the public institutional sector as well as in a large company very much involved in climate issues. During the Convention, Amandine was part of the Consume working group and also had the chance to join the Governance Committee to represent the citizen’s collective. Since then, she is a member of the association Les 150 and leads the “Europe/International” working group to promote the Convention’s model and follow the implementation of some measures that need to be debated at these levels. She also follows in particular the national debate on the regulation of advertising and has participated in working meetings on this subject between the Ministries of Ecological Transition and Culture.
Citizens participating in the break-out rooms
My name is Claire, I am 57 years old and I work as a Director of Care at the Hospital Center of Cambrai, a town of 33,000 inhabitants. I was drawn for the Citizen’s Climate Convention to my amazement. My daughters were very surprised by this draw as according to them, I was not concerned by this issue. Obviously these doubts on their part made me want to be part of the adventure. In 2020, I therefore experienced two major shocks: on the one hand, the Citizen’s Convention and the awareness of the climate emergency, the extent of which I had not imagined, and, on the other hand, the health crisis which was a second shock with the same sense of urgency and inevitability. I was fortunate enough to be a member of the “To Feed” group. Which led me to wonder: if the concept of Participatory Democracy is possible in France then why not elsewhere?
I entered the University of Lille after the master’s degree in Public Affairs at Sciences Po Paris, where I developed a passion for political sociology. I first worked on the political uses of the Great National Debate during my master’s thesis, after which I was lucky enough to be able to pursue a PhD. In the continuity of my first research, my PhD thesis deals with the relationship between interest groups and participatory mechanisms. It is within the framework of this research that I was able to observe the Citizen’s Convention for the Climate and that I am now interested in the reform of the Economic, Social and Environmental Council and the citizen’s collective “Vaccination”.
Bjørn is Deputy Director of DBT and has led numerous technology assessment and public engagement projects in various technology and policy fields. He was the global coordinator of the World Wide Views projects, and has hands on experience with organising consensus conference, citizens’ jury, citizens’ summit, and other citizen participation methods. He has designed and coordinated several public engagement processes in FP7 and H2020 projects, and has and recently organized citizen engagement for the definition of the Horizon Europe Missions. He is part of the DBT team behind the design and facilitation of the (online) Danish Climate Assembly and member of the management committee of the Knowledge Network on Climate Assemblies established by the European Climate Foundation.
Eric Buge is an administrator at the National Assembly and Secretary General of the Study Group on Parliamentary Life and Institutions (GEVIPAR). His work focuses on political and democratic institutions. He has published Droit de la vie politique (Puf, 2018), as well as articles on the functioning of Parliament, on the exemplarity of public officials, and on citizen participation.
Léo Cohen was a member of the governance committee of the Citizens’ Climate Convention. Previously, he served as special advisor to the Minister of State, Minister of Ecological Transition and Solidarity (2018-19), Deputy Director, then Chief of Staff to the President of the National Assembly (2017-18), and advisor to the Secretary of State for Biodiversity (2016-17). He now works as an independent consultant, specializing in ecological transition and participation issues.
Dimitri Courant is PhD candidate in political science at the University of Lausanne and University Paris 8. His research focuses on deliberation, representation, democracy and sortition. His qualitative fieldwork inquiry compares several case-studies: the Irish Citizens’ Assemblies (Ireland); the High Council of the Military Function, the Citizens’ group of the CESE, the National Great Debate, the Citizens’ Convention for Climate (France); the PubliForums and the CIR Demoscan project (Switzerland).
Cyril Dion is a French writer, director, poet and environmental activist. In 2006, he participated in the creation of the Colibris Movement, which he led until 2013. In 2012, he co-founded the magazine Kaizen, of which he was editorial director from 2012 to 2014, and the collection Domaine du Possible at Actes Sud Publishing. In 2016, he won the César for best documentary for his film Demain, which obtained more than one million entries. In 2019, he is a leading figure in the Gilets citoyens collective, which calls for the creation of a citizens’ assembly drawn by lot to overcome the Gilets jaunes crisis, and is then appointed guarantor of the Citizens’ Climate Convention.
Post-doctor at ETH Zurich after a PhD in economics at the Paris School of Economics, Adrien Fabre works on the energy transition, political preferences, democratic decision-making processes, and especially on climate change. His work is available on https://sites.google.com/view/adrien-fabre. Adrien Fabre also has a youtube channel where he exposes humanist proposals on ecology and democracy: the human channel (bit.ly/chaine_humaine).
Professor Farrell, Member of the Royal Irish Academy, is Head of Politics and International Relations at University College Dublin. A specialist in the study of electoral systems, political parties and representation, his current work is focused on deliberative mini-publics. To date he has advised and/or researched six government-led deliberative mini-public processes (citizens’ assemblies) in Ireland, Belgium and the UK. His most recent books include: Reimagining Democracy: Lessons in Deliberative Democracy from the Irish Front Line (co-authored, Cornell University Press, 2019) and Deliberative Mini-Publics: Core Design Features (co-authored, Bristol University Press, 2021).
I am a sociologist, senior researcher at the Gustave Eiffel University, teaching at the School of Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences (EHESS). I have been interested in questions of democracy by studying disputes on transport infrastructures siting. In these conflicts, new forms of public debate were invented, then institutionalised with the creation of the National Commission for Public Debate. Facing nowadays the major upheavals imposed by climate change, I am convinced that democracy must be intensified and capacitate citizens to lead a necessary change in society. To contribute to this, ten years ago, I created a vast network of researchers on citizen participation in democratic life and public decision-making, the CNRS research group on Democracy and Public Participation. As such, I was a member of the governance committee of the Citizens’ Convention on Climate.
Marc Fesneau is Minister Delegate to the Prime Minister in charge of relations with Parliament and Citizen Participation since July 2020 in the government of Jean Castex. He was previously, since October 2018, Minister to the Prime Minister in charge of Relations with Parliament in the government of Edouard Philippe. Marc Fesneau was elected deputy for the first constituency of Loir-et-Cher in 2017 and chaired the MoDem group in the National Assembly between 2017 and his entry into the Government.
Marine Fleury holds a PhD in law from the University of Paris 1 Panthéon Sorbonne and is a lecturer in public law at the University of Picardie Jules Verne. Her research focuses on the institutionalization of participatory processes in French law (Participation in the sense of Article 7 of the Charter of the Environment, Politeia, 2020) and on the construction of a climate law through participatory processes (The citizen’s convention for the climate: renewal of the mode of government of climate policy, Pedone, 2021) or judicial action (with C. Cournil, From “the case of the century” to “the heist of the century”, Revue des droits de l’Homme, 2021). She participated in the committee of jurists that accompanied the citizens of the Citizens’ Climate Convention in the legal expression of their proposals.
John Gastil (PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison) is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Communication Arts and Sciences and Political Science at the Pennsylvania State University, where he is senior scholar at the McCourtney Institute for Democracy. Gastil’s research focuses on the theory and practice of deliberative democracy. The National Science Foundation has supported his research on the Oregon Citizens’ Initiative Review, the Australian Citizens’ Parliament, and American juries. His most recent books are Legislature by Lot (Verso, 2019) with Erik Olin Wright, Hope for Democracy (Oxford, 2020) with Katherine R. Knobloch, and the novel Gray Matters (John Hunt, 2020).
An economist with an engineering background, Louis-Gaëtan Giraudet is a Research fellow at Ecole des Ponts ParisTech and CIRED, where he develops modelling and economic tools to assess environmental policy in the residential sector.
After studying physics and a first career as a science journalist, Hélène Guillemot is now a researcher (CNRS) at the Alexandre Koyré Center in sociology and history of science. Her work focuses on climate science – particularly modelling – and the relationship between science and politics in the problem of climate change.
Trained as an urban planner, Sophie Guillain is Managing Director and Partner of Res publica, a consulting firm specializing in environmental, urban planning and transportation projects. She specializes in consultation, public communication and issues related to territorial development. She leads stakeholder management missions for the implementation of national and regional public policies, particularly in the areas of sustainable development, transportation, food, and sports. She works on a daily basis with the public, technicians and elected officials at all levels of local government, in France and abroad. She is also a trainer for elected officials and local government executives: in consultation and public speaking. She coordinates Res publica’s teams in the implementation of missions in order to mobilize the appropriate skills for each client.
Mie Inouye is Assistant Professor of Political Studies at Bard College and a joint PhD candidate in Political Science and Religious Studies at Yale University. She holds a B.A. from Tufts University and an M.A. from the University of Toronto. Her research interests include democratic theory, social movements, identity politics, Black political thought, American political thought, theories of political action, and religion and politics. Her dissertation, Antinomies of Organizing, reconstructs theories of political organizing from the praxis of organizers in the twentieth-century U.S. labor and civil rights movements: William Z. Foster, Saul Alinsky, Myles Horton, and Ella Baker. It uses their praxis to theorize forms of organization that develop the democratic agency of racially and economically oppressed people and argues that the American organizing tradition offers democratic theory important insights into the modes and ends of democratic participation.
Hélène Landemore is Professor of Political Science at Yale University, where she teaches political theory. A French citizen by birth (from Normandy), she has been living in the U.S.A, where she first came to complete a doctorate at Harvard University, for the last 20 years. She is the author of Democratic Reason (Princeton University Press: 2013, Spitz prize 2015); and Open Democracy (Princeton University Press 2020) as well as a number of edited volumes and articles in democratic theory. Her research has recently been featured in the New Yorker and on Ezkra Klein’s New York Times podcast. She was an observer of the French Citizens’ Convention for Climate and is a co-convener of the conference. More about her work at www.helenelandemore.com. Twitter handle: @landemore
Jane Mansbridge, Charles F. Adams Professor Emerita at the Harvard Kennedy School, has authored, edited, or co-edited many books and articles on democracy, from her early Beyond Adversary Democracy (1980) to the more recent Deliberative Systems (2012), Political Negotiation (2015), and the Oxford Handbook of Deliberative Democracy (2018). She received the Johan Skytte Prize in 2018, and was president of the American Political Science Association in 2012-13.
Rabhya Mehrotra is a third-year undergraduate student at Yale University, studying computer science and political science. She is interested in studying the question of political legitimacy as it relates to citizens’ assemblies and how technologies can bolster deliberation. This summer, will be conducting research in Reykjavik on the Icelandic Constitutional Process from 2010-2013. On campus, she is an Opinion Editor for the Yale Daily News and a co-director for the Yale Politics Initiative.
Pratap Bhanu Mehta
Pratap Bhanu Mehta is a political scientist based in India. He has been President, Centre for Policy Research, India’s leading think tank and Vice-Chancellor, Ashoka University, He has taught political theory at Harvard, NYU Law School and Jawaharlal Nehru University. He has been elected SSRC Fellow for 2021. He has also served in public policy roles as Convenor of the Prime Minister of India’s National Knowledge Commission and Member National Security Advisory Board. He is a prolific columnist and Editorial Consultant to the Indian Express. He is recipient of the Infosys Prize 2011.
Claire Mellier is a facilitator and researcher. She was part of the facilitation team at Climate Assembly UK and one of the accredited researchers who observed France’s Convention Citoyenne pour le Climat. She is currently working with the Centre for Climate Change and Social Transformation (CAST) at Cardiff University on a comparative analysis of the two climate citizens’ assemblies. Most recently she was a facilitator for the Scottish Climate Assembly, Kendal Climate Citizens’ jury and North of Tyne Climate Assembly. In 2020, in collaboration with other partners, she launched the Global Assembly for COP26. She is the author of a recent Carnegie Europe article entitled “Getting Climate Citizens’ Assemblies Right”. She also contributed to the March-April edition of the New Internationalist on Citizens’ Assemblies.
Matthew Meyers is a first-year student at Yale University studying political science with a certificate in Statistics and Data Science. This spring, he was a student in Professor Hélène Landemore’s seminar on Open Democracy. He is passionate about fighting for democratic reform and for climate action. At Yale, he works with Every Vote Counts, fighting for youth engagement in politics, and off campus, he is a volunteer for Represent Us, an anti-corruption organization.
Vatsal Naresh is a PhD student in Political Science. His research focuses on democratic theory, political violence, and constitutionalism. He is co-editor of Constituent Assemblies (Cambridge University Press 2018), and Negotiating Democracy and Religious Pluralism (Oxford University Press forthcoming).
Managing Director of the Terra Nova think tank, a former student of the Ecole Normale Supérieure, Thierry Pech was Co-Chairman of the Governance Committee of the Citizens’ Climate Convention, CEO of Alternatives Economiques, Managing Director of Editions du Seuil, Secretary General of the think tank “La République des idées”, Advisor to the CFDT in charge of relations with intellectuals and producers of expertise. He has notably published, in 2017, Insoumissions. Portrait de la France qui vient, Seuil and, in 2011, Le temps des riches. Anatomy of a secession, Seuil.
Christiane Rafidinarivo is Associate Professor for Political Science, International Affairs and Geopolitics at the Institut d’Etudes Politiques Madagascar. She is Guest Researcher at Centre of Political Research CEVIPOF CNRS Sciences Po, France since 2014. She has a Doctorate with Accreditation to Direct Research in Political Science, University of La Réunion, France where she is an Associate Researcher at the Research Laboratory on Creole and Francophone Spaces. She is specialist in democratization and comparative political analysis on overseas territories.
Founder and president of Res publica, Gilles-Laurent Rayssac trained in economics and political science. He is a consultant and mediator, expert in consultation and collaborative dialogue with public and private organizations. He teaches at Sciences Po and at the University of Paris Panthéon-Sorbonne. He is a member of the board of directors of the Institute for Consultation and Citizen Participation and has chaired the Orientation and Dialogue with Society Committee of Santé publique France. He contributed to the conception and animation of the Citizens’ Climate Convention.
Graham Smith is Professor of Politics and Director of the Centre for the Study of Democracy, University of Westminster, UK. He is a specialist in democratic theory and practice, with particular expertise in citizens’ assemblies. His publications include Democratic Innovations: Designing Institutions for Citizen Participation (Cambridge, 2009) and Can Democracy Safeguard the Future? (Polity, 2021). He is Chair of the Knowledge Network on Climate Assemblies (KNOCA) established by the European Climate Foundation.
Jane Suiter is Professor in the School of Communications, at Dublin City University. Her research focus is on the information environment in the public sphere and in particular on scaling up deliberation and tackling disinformation. She is the senior Research Fellow on the Irish Citizens’ Assembly on gender equality and is co-PI on the Irish Citizen Assembly (2016-2018) and the Irish Constitutional Convention (2012-2014) and a founder member of We the Citizens (2011), Ireland’s first deliberative experiment. She is a member of the Stewarding Group on the Scottish Citizens’ Assembly and a member of the OECD’s FutureDemocracy network. She has published in 30 plus journals including Science, International Journal of Political Science, Electoral Studies, Politics and the International Journal of Communication and is the author of three books including Reimagining Democracy: Lessons in Deliberative Democracy from the Irish Frontline published by Cornell University Press.
Audrey Tang is Taiwan’s digital minister in charge of Social Innovation. Audrey is known for revitalizing the computer languages Perl and Haskell, as well as building the online spreadsheet system EtherCalc in collaboration with Dan Bricklin. In the public sector, Audrey served on Taiwan national development council’s open data committee and the 12-year basic education curriculum committee; and led the country’s first e-Rulemaking project. In the private sector, Audrey worked as a consultant with Apple on computational linguistics, with Oxford University Press on crowd lexicography, and with Socialtext on social interaction design. In the social sector, Audrey actively contributes to g0v (“gov zero”), a vibrant community focusing on creating tools for the civil society, with the call to “fork the government.”
Sébastien Treyer is Executive Director of IDDRI, since January 2019 (he joined the institute in 2010 as Director of Programmes). He is also Chairman of the Scientific and Technical Committee of the French Global Environment Facility (FFEM) and member of the Lead Faculty of the Earth System Governance Network.