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How to Democratically Improve the Untact Participation by COVID-19

Hyun-Chan Ahn ․ Jung-Hyun Lee

The face-to-face community participation has been banned and introduced non-face-to-face way by the physical distancing against the COVID-19 pandemic. As this rules prioritize quarantine safety over democratic decision making, the level of participation has decreased by the non-face-to-face way. Based on the evaluation survey of 1,200 members of Seoul Community Board, which is one of the representative community organization in Seoul, this research aims to propose how to operate and support the safe and democratic community participation.

Although having a good physical and social infrastructure, they mainly have used a rudimentary device and online service such as smartphone and SNS for the participation. While the satisfaction on 5 requirements of democratic decision making, which are equitable engagement, personal relationship, inform, deliberation, and empower, was higher than 60%, it was lower than the face-to-face way before the pandemic in 2019.

This result implies that people accept the non-face-to-face way positively as participation is not interrupted even in the pandemic, but fundamentally recognize that the face-to-face way is preferable. Therefore, it is necessary not only to maintain face-to-face way as much as possible while observing quarantine rules in principle, but also to take detailed measures according to the public forum and activities rather than restricting them all at once.