iDEM: Innovative and Inclusive Democratic Spaces for Deliberation and Participation

Project Co-Ordinator
Horacio Saggion, Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF)
Principal Investigator at Leeds
Serge Sharoff
Co-Investigator at Leeds
Carlo Eugeni
EU Horizon
Time frame

1 Overall project aims

iDEM aims at addressing the linguistic barriers in deliberative and participatory democratic practices through a thorough intersectional analysis of conditions under which the existing structures of power limit participation of marginalised and vulnerable communities who might have limited skills in reading, writing or understanding a fairly complex language required for deliberative and participatory processes. Our vision in this project is to improve this situation by developing artificial intelligence and natural language processing models to make democratic spaces more inclusive and accessible for all. The democratic spaces to be proposed and implemented in realistic use cases will allow debate between different sectors of the society. This will be the first study to investigate artificial intelligence and natural language processing methods as enablers in addressing political inequality for deliberation and participation in democratic spaces.

2 Our specific aims in WP3

The University of Leeds leads WP3, Advanced Human Language Technology for non-discriminatory and inclusive democratic spaces

This WP will research, develop and deliver the iDEM text simplification system and services. This will include investigating mechanisms:

  1. to identify complex linguistic phenomena in the specific context of the project,
  2. to implement automatic transformation aiming at reducing the complexity of the information presentation making it more accessible to specific audiences,
  3. to implement a text generation assistant in the content of deliberative democracy, and
  4. to integrate the components into an open-API cloud-based web-services platform to deliver the iDEM services and Text-simplification App.

The WP will apply Deep Learning techniques to make the methods applicable to a range of different audiences, languages and domains. The solutions (algorithms and language resources) will be implemented as a freely available library for easy integration into Internet-based deliberative and participatory democratic spaces.

Text Difficulty Assessment and Classification Tool. M1-M30. Lead: UOLeeds. Participants: UPF, CAPITO
Multilingual Adaptable Text Simplification System. M1-M30. Lead: UPF. Participants: UOLeeds, CAPITO
Intrinsic and Expert Evaluation. M6-M31. Lead: CAPITO, Participants: UOLeeds, UPF, ANFFAS, PIM, IMPD
Text Generation Assistant. M12-M34. Lead: UPF, Participants: PIM, ANFFAS, IMPD, UOLeeds
Service Implementation. M6-M36. Lead: MAC. Participants: CAPITO, UOLeeds, UPF

3 Participants

Participant organisation name Country
(Coordinator) Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF) ES
University of Leeds (UOL) UK
Organización de entidades en favor de las personas con ES
Discapacidad Intelectual de la Comunidad de Madrid (Plena Inclusión Madrid) (PIM)  
The National Microelectronics Applications Centre Ltd (MAC) IE
Anffas Nazionale (ANFFAS) IT
Fundación Cibervoluntarios (CIB) ES
Actionaid International Italia Onlus (AAIT) IT
Institut Municipal de Persones amb Discapacitat (IMPD) ES
Sindicatura de Greuges de Barcelona (Barcelona Ombudsman's Office) ES

Date: 2024-2026

Author: Serge Sharoff

Created: 2024-01-24 Wed 21:00