Brazil has conducted some of the world’s most stunning experiments in participatory democracy, most notably the creation of city budgets through local citizens' meetings. Leonardo Avritzer introduces a fresh analytical approach to reveal the social and institutional conditions that make civic participation most effective, expanding the empirical base for assessing these institutions. By examining participatory health councils and city master plans within a diverse group of cities—São Paulo, Belo Horizonte, and Salvador—this book goes beyond the current literature, which has focused almost exclusively on budgeting in Porto Alegre. Ultimately, Participatory Institutions in Democratic Brazil provides a more complex understanding of the links among participation, citizenship, and democracy through a set of case studies that will resonate both inside and outside Brazil.
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