Informing and engaging citizens

What to read in the age of Trump

What to read in the age of Trump

We need to think about democracy – now more than ever. As Donald Trump becomes the 45th President of the United States, Democratic Audit asked Brian Klaas, Russell Dalton, Cas Mudde and Meg Russell what texts they are turning to in order to understand and learn from the Trump phenomenon. This post is a work in progress […]

Multiculturalism is unpopular with the majority – even though it makes for happier societies

Multiculturalism is unpopular with the majority – even though it makes for happier societies

How do people feel about multicultural policies? Ethnic majorities tend to resent them, and feel less safe in societies with a number of affirmative and rights-based policies, write Pamela Irving Jackson and Peter Doerschler. As a result, governments have come under pressure to ensure policies that tackle inequality benefit everyone. Yet both ethnic majorities and minorities declare […]

If your parents didn’t vote, chances are you won’t either – unless you move up the social ladder

If your parents didn’t vote, chances are you won’t either – unless you move up the social ladder

 You are less likely to vote if your parents didn’t go to the polls. But new research by Hannu Lahtinen, Heikki Hiilamo and Hanna Wass suggest this effect is at least partly overcome if you move up the social ladder yourself. The more social mobility a society can achieve, the smaller the gaps in turnout between […]

So-called ‘populist’ parties have many different grievances. Lumping them together won’t help defeat them

So-called ‘populist’ parties have many different grievances. Lumping them together won’t help defeat them

Populism is the buzzword of the moment. But, Takis Pappas explains, there are three kinds of parties aggregated under the populist label: anti-democrats, nativists and ‘pure’ populists. Lumping them together is both misleading and politically perilous because they do not spring from the same source or the same set of grievances. Instead of lamenting a generic, ill-defined populism, we need […]

Brexit, Corbyn, Article 50: in 2017, we need to take back our parliamentary democracy

Brexit, Corbyn, Article 50: in 2017, we need to take back our parliamentary democracy

Brexit, Jeremy Corbyn’s election and Article 50: 2016 saw three profound shocks to the integrity of Britain’s parliamentary system, writes Robert Saunders. Together, they amount to a quiet revolution – potentially the most significant recasting of how Britain is governed since the coming of universal suffrage. Understanding how this has happened, why it matters and what […]

Pick of 2016: the best of Democratic Audit

Pick of 2016: the best of Democratic Audit

2016 was an extraordinary year. With Donald Trump’s presidency less than three weeks away, Article 50 due to be invoked in March, local and mayoral elections in the UK and ground-shifting votes in Europe, 2017 promises more seismic change. Here’s a selection of some of Democratic Audit’s most thought-provoking pieces from 2016. Similar Posts

Trump portrayed ‘identity politics’ as a form of corruption

Trump portrayed ‘identity politics’ as a form of corruption

Donald Trump attacked the US government and Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign as a ‘swamp’ of corruption and vested interests. But corruption in the commonly-understood sense of bribery is relatively rare in the United States. Instead, Bo Rothstein says, Trump was able to persuade white, working-class voters that Democrat ‘identity politics’ was a form of corruption that disadvantaged them. […]

Fat-shaming: Change4Life’s anti-obesity ‘nudge’ campaign glosses over social inequalities

Fat-shaming: Change4Life’s anti-obesity ‘nudge’ campaign glosses over social inequalities

The Change4Life campaign draws on ‘nudge’ theory to encourage families to ‘make better choices’ about their diet and exercise. But, argues Jane Mulderrig, behavioural economics is a poor substitute for radical state intervention that would address the root causes of obesity – such as poverty, the availability of cheap junk food and inadequate public transport. […]

When Americans believe in redistribution and the right to a job, they’re more likely to vote Democrat

When Americans believe in redistribution and the right to a job, they’re more likely to vote Democrat

The concept of democracy often means different things to different people. But are there elements on which people can agree or disagree? Judd R. Thornton and Kris Dunn examine the relationship between US citizens’ beliefs about democracy and how they vote. They find that while most people believe that free elections and protecting civil rights are […]

The secret of better government? Citizens who complain

The secret of better government? Citizens who complain

Citizens are becoming more sceptical and critical of their governments. Chris Welzel and Russell Dalton examine whether this phenomenon is good or bad for democratic stability by looking at the relationship between assertive and allegiant citizen norms and effective governance. They challenge the Burkean view that good government requires an obedient citizenry to function properly. Assertive citizens […]

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