Episode 22: G. John Ikenberry

Democracy is often imagined at its purest at a micro level. Town hall meetings are sometimes imagined as a simpler form of democratic governance, so international relations can feel as though it is miles away from democracy. Andy yet, it is the international liberal order which has brought about the vast proliferation of democracy around... Continue Reading →

Episode 20: William Howell and Terry Moe

    Millions of Americans are voting for the President of the United States. Some of you will hear this episode before the election is over. Others will likely listen after the election is over. I hope my conversation with William Howell and Terry Moe will have relevance no matter when you listen.  William is Chair of the Department... Continue Reading →

Episode 19: Barbara Freese

Democratic values are about more than politics. They permeate throughout society and into the economy. Barbara Freese has examined how corporate leaders have not lived up to these values. She offers examples like the tobacco industry, the use of lead in gasoline, and global warming to demonstrate how they have avoided not just accountability but... Continue Reading →

Episode 17: John Matsusaka

  The United States has a long tradition of direct democracy through referendums dating back to the early years of the republic. Nearly every state today has some form of referendums or ballot initiatives. Yet the United States has never had a national referendum. John Matsusaka points out that from a comparative perspective, this is... Continue Reading →

Episode 16: Don F. Kettl

Federalism has become marginalized in academic literature. Everybody knows the United States depends on a federal system, but few talk about it. The nationalization of politics makes federalism feel esoteric and obsolete. My conversation with Donald Kettl explains why federalism remains vibrant and relevant. And it is necessary to understand American politics today as much... Continue Reading →

Suzanne Mettler & Robert C. Lieberman – Four Threats

Polarization has become known as the great challenge for American Democracy in the Twenty-First Century. Suzanne Mettler and Robert Lieberman include it among their Four Threats. So long as polarization is portrayed as a problem, the solution remains simple, although difficult to achieve. The solution to polarization is described as compromise and moderation. But what... Continue Reading →

Podcast Ep. 12 – Jill Long Thompson

Jill Long Thompson has had a distinguished career in public service. She served three terms in Congress and was part of the Clinton and Obama administrations. Her new book The Character of American Democracy reflects on her experiences to explain the importance of ethics and character in politics. Our conversation discusses how character and ethics... Continue Reading →

Podcast Ep. 11 – Juliet B. Schor

Larry Diamond once referred to the internet as a form of "liberation technology." But his most recent writings have warned of a "postmodern totalitarianism." Most of the democracy literature on the internet has focused on social media and artificial intelligence. However, the sharing economy has had a similar impact on capitalism and society. Uber, Lyft,... Continue Reading →

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