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Personal Democracy Forum, this year's edition is in Gdansk

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 16/03/2016 Pawel Adamowicz

What was supposed to be one global connected community is now a group of less and less connected tribes. Access to information and sharing is now easier, cheaper and faster than ever. But does it make our democracy better? We are going to discuss about it in the European Solidarity Center.
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The term "personal democracy" aims to draw attention to the fact that new technologies related to the Internet and mobile telephony allow "ordinary citizens" communication on a massive scale.
It was during PDF Forum in Warsaw in 2014, that I announced the implementation of a program of openness in the City Hall in Gdansk, which has been successfully implemented.
Continuing the development of this policy, and realizing that democracy and dialogue with the citizens requires changing tools and methods, especially in the era of advanced technologies, I am proud to announce this year's edition of the Personal Democracy Forum in Poland to be held in Gdansk on 17-18 March 2016 r. in the European Solidarity Centre.
I would like to invite you to Gdansk to discover new ways of realizing our heritage of Solidarity and Freedom, also personal.
Here are some details of the forum PDF PL CEE 2016: Reconnecting Citizens
The Internet was supposed to be a communications revolution. To connect us beyond any level ever possible or imaginable. And yes - more and more things are connected, but what about us - the people? Information surrounds us. It reaches us wherever we are. But does it help us or distract us? It's easier to produce, but much harder to verify. Who do we talk to? Who listens? Who reacts? How do we make information meaningful? And moreover: how to begin a debate on top of it?
When things get uncomfortable we can unfriend or unfollow someone - but does that solve the problem? Or just hide it? By evading conflict, we close ourselves in smaller and smaller circles that are harder to get out from.
PDF PL CEE 2016 poses a question of how we can reconnect citizens to restore the public debate. How do we tackle the issue of a growing disconnect between various groups? It all starts with information. Does it work for or against society?

On March 17-18, 400 European participants from the Balkans to the Caucasus as well as additional guests from other continents will gather in Gdańsk, the cradle of democratic movements, to share their experiences and present solutions designed to reunite citizens. The aim of PDF PL CEE 2016 is to fight invidious stereotypes and talk about the Internet as a tool of building the new information society.

On the first day, 20 invited experts representing NGOs, public administration and technological institutions will present their perspective on the role of the Internet in dis- and re-connecting citizens, share their practices and come up with innovative solutions aiming at building democratic information society. We will have a pleasure to learn from specialists from the entire world.
The second day of PDF will be devoted to community-organised sessions in the form of individual talks, demos group presentations, panels or open sessions. The Community Day will offer the total of 20 organised 50-minute sessions in four parallel blocks.

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