The referendum debate is not living up to its democratic ideals. Both sides of the divide have focused heavily on negative, fear-based arguments to make their case, which prevent democratic engagement among the electorate. Charlotte Galpin shows how this negativity is inhibiting critical reflection and fostering cynicism. She also notes that the debate is non-inclusive, with an striking absence of […]
With the focus often being on party politics, elections, and individual policies, it’s easy to lose sight of the broader framework in which decision-making takes place. In looking at the democratic framework, a fundamental question arises: should democracy be about conflict – one’s values over another’s – or about consensus? George Vasilev explains that the two are not mutually […]
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 […]