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The End of Politics?

29th June 2017 · 6:30pm - 8:30pm

In person | Virtual event

 The End of Politics?

This meeting will discuss how we might do politics better so as to engage some of the big issues of our time and make a difference. This meeting will be held jointly by GlobalNet21 and the Conway Hall Ethical Society.

These last two years will have seen a series of referendums and elections in a number of countries – and some wonder whether this will have settled anything.

Are we at a stage in our history where we have to question the very basis of our democracy and consider how it can be brought into the 21st century?


Speakers are:

Alex Krasodomski-Jones is a researcher at Demos, the leading cross-party Think-Tank, working in its Centre for the Analysis of Social Media (CASM). His primary research interest is political extremism and its reportage on social media. He also manages CASM’s analytics capability, including data collection, analytics and visualisation. Alex is a frequent media commentator, and writes regularly for the Huffington Post and Spectator. He led Demos’ project mapping the political Twittersphere ahead of the 2015 General Election, which was launched on BBC Newsnight.

Alastair Donald is Associate Director of the Institute of Ideas. He coordinates planning and programming across projects including Battle of Ideas, the annual festival of debate at the Barbican, London which presents a unique public forum to discuss the big issues of our time, including developments in politics. His works also on Battle of Ideas Europe, which broadens the discussion within a network of ten European cities from Athens to Stockholm. Alastair is also co-founder of Living Freedom , the IoI’s residential school which allows 18-25-year-olds to explore the meaning and ideals of freedom in the twenty-first century. He is an experienced cultural programmer having worked in the UK and internationally, curating events across the social disciplines. He is co-editor of The Lure of the City: from slums to suburbs (2011).

Professor Evan Parker will Chair this meeting. Evan believes that we have to find a way to “do politics better.” He is active in the Ethical Society and also coordinates the GN21 Voices project set up to focus on key themes and create an action programme and to see how we can initiate a big conversation on a more positive form of politics.

Francis Sealey will introduce the event on behalf of GlobalNet21.

Disenchantment with politics is widespread and the danger is that if we do not reshape democracy for our present age then authoritarian solutions will happen by default.

• Many still seem to be engaged in the battles of the last industrial century with its left/right politics when we are now moving fast into a post industrial era.

• We are still heavily dependent on periodic elections as the basis for our democracy and there is an increasing realization that this is not enough. Citizens want involvement in a more direct and deliberative way.

• The Internet and social media have changed the nature of information and provide greater opportunities for direct citizen involvement in policy formation.

Do we now need to rethink democracy from the bottom up that reflects the changes of our century?

This is the purpose of this meeting – to discuss how we can develop democracy anew.

The event will take place in the Brockway Room. The room is located on the ground floor and is fully accessible. There is also an induction loop fitted for the hard of hearing.

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