In March 2016, Democratic Dashboard 2.0 was launched, a web portal aimed at giving voters in the UK easily accessible information for the elections on May 5th. This was the culmination of several years of work and preparation by Democratic Audit UK, based in the LSE, seeking to engage voters in the increasingly active civic technology field. Carl Cullinane outlines […]
Across Western democracies there is a clear and well-known correlation between social class and patterns of electoral participation: poorer, manual, less formally educated citizens are less likely to vote than their more affluent, more educated peers. Tim Jones outlines how this feeds through into the language of politics and how mainstream politics talks down to people from positions of power. n response […]
Over the past twelve months the Democracy Matters research team, consisting of academics and campaigners, has been conducting a project on the use of citizens’ assemblies to explore complex elements of constitutional policymaking in the United Kingdom. Here, one of those campaigners, Katie Ghose, discusses the findings of the project and explains why we need to act upon them.
It’s not […]
Most democratic nations use income tax. Yet the reasons the measure was adopted were far from democratic, explain Isabela Mares and Didac Queralt. The measure was originally used to consolidate the power of the elites by imposing a heavier burden on industrialists, while the value of one’s vote would even be weighted by the amount of tax one would […]
Conventional wisdom amongst scholars, as well as much of the public, sees crime as an attractive and easy political issue for politicians seeking to expand their popularity. Regardless of whether crime is on the rise, mass publics are believed to be poor risk assessors, predisposed to react to perceived criminal behaviour with support for singularly punitive policies. However, drawing […]
That politics is broken and rotten in the UK may well be the defining belief of our time. But is it broken at Westminster? Tony Wright disagrees with the pervasive assessment, writing that, though the system does require a range of political reforms, reform requires a realistic understanding of what is wrong; and a determination to work to put it right.
It is […]
Against the background of a general breakdown of public confidence in the political elite, politicians on both left and right have seen themselves not as part of a broader governing elite but as outsiders, empowered by their democratic mandate to shake up government and make it more responsive to the wishes of the people. Nat le Roux argues that taken to its […]
Capitalism need not churn inexorably toward higher inequality; democracies can tame the disproportionate power of elites
While some democracies adopt policies that systematically tend to favour the majority of the population and thus reduce inequality, others instead create policies that favour elites and the wealthy more broadly. Mike Albertus and Victor Menaldo find that the effect of democracy on redistribution is a function of the conditions under which countries transition to democracy. In democracies where elites have had little say in […]