Referendum 'Stuttgart 21'
In 2011, the public conflict about the infrastructure project “Stuttgart 21” reached its height, raising fundamental questions concerning the modes of political participation and the legitimacy of political decisions. The discussions around “Stuttgart 21” and the democratic quality in Baden-Württemberg are still ongoing today. In this study we focus on the long term trends in acceptance, evaluation and interest accompanying „Stuttgart 21“ and thereafter. Additionally, we examine the attitude of citizens towards reforms of democracy and concrete projects of citizen involvement: How well do citizens feel informed? What level of participation do they want? To what extent should decisions made by the public be binding?
As a follow-up to the rolling panel project “Election Study Baden-Württemberg 2011”, respondents were invited to participate in a twelve wave online survey that was accompanied by five telephone surveys. The applied methods and collected data allow us to trace and analyse processes of opinion formation and decision making in the topic of direct democracy in great detail.
Field work for the fifth telephone wave ended in September 2014, field work for the twelfth online wave in October 2014. Data for 3,000 cases are cleaned, made user-friendly and merged with the previous waves. On October 23, the results from the telephone survey were presented in the State Ministry of Baden-Württemberg. Additionally, we published a table book with the findings of the telephone survey. Currently we are working on papers and further presentations about direct democracy, citizen involvement and democratic innovations based on these data. Our focus lies on the investigation of factors that could potentially influence varying attitudes towards direct democracy and democratic innovations among people living in the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg.