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Out-of-the-Box Thinking: Democracy Is For People & Not Corporations

17th May 2018 · 6:30pm - 8:30pm

In person | Virtual event

 Out-of-the-Box Thinking: Democracy Is For People & Not Corporations

For the fourth of our Out-of-the-Box Thinking series, co-hosted by GlobalNet21 and Conway Hall, join us for a discussion with Nick Dearden,  Simon Franks, Dr Anne Daguerre and Professor Des Freedman about how our democracy can be undermined by corporate power and elite domination. Unless we correct this then democracy will exist but in name only.

We often look on Multinational corporations as being agents that lobby government as do other organisations in civil society. However in reality they belong on the inside. They are part of the nexus of power that creates policy. They face no significant resistance, from either government or opposition, as their interests have now been woven into the fabric of all three main political parties in Britain.

And because they are intrinsic to all main political parties their influence on democracy is not discussed in Parliament. But that is what we wish to discuss at this meeting.

Does a state-corporate nexus of power bypass democracy and make a mockery of the voting process as corporations buy political favours and eat into our public services without redress?

If so then how can we remedy this and bring democracy back to the people rather than see it in the hands of a self-perpetuating power elite?

This will be the basis of this discussion with ample time for audience questions and comments as part of the evening. Helping us lead this discussion will be:

Nick Dearden is Director of Global Justice Now. Nick started his career at War on Want where he became a senior campaigner. He went on to be corporates campaign manager at Amnesty International UK. As director of the Jubilee Debt Campaign, he built strong relationships with campaigners in the global south. He helped win a new law to stop Vulture Funds from using UK courts to squeeze huge debt payments out of poor countries.

Simon Franks co-founded film rental service LOVEFiLM and film distribution company Redbus. Former city trader Franks started Redbus from his spare bedroom, which grew to become one of the largest film distributors in Europe, with turnover of $50m, before co-founding one of the biggest names in film rental LOVEFiLM in 2003. Co-founder of two hugely successful businesses, Simon has been a prominent figure in UK enterprise since the 1990s. He has told backers he wants to emulate Emmanuel Marcon’s En Marche! Movement and has suggested willingness to fund a new Centralist Party

Anne Daguerre is Associate Professor in Work, Welfare and Employment. She completed a PhD in political science in 1998. Anne has held several visiting appointments in the United States. In 2017 she was a Fulbright fellow in the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University, Virginia. Anne specialises in governance and public policy, with a particular focus on welfare reform.

Des Freedman is Professor of Media and Communication Studies at Goldsmiths College, University of London and is interested in the relationship between media and power together with the political and economic contexts of media policymaking, regulation and reform. He was a founding member and recent chair of the Media Reform Coalition and was project lead for the Inquiry into the Future of Public Service Television chaired by Lord Puttnam.

Please note to attend this event you will need to register for a ticket via Eventbrite (via the Book Now button) in order to ensure a place.

This event is free for members of GlobalNet21 and the Conway Hall Ethical Society.


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