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The Future of Democracy

Hosted by LSE Festival: How Do We Get to a Post-COVID World?

Online and in-person public event (Great Hall, Marshall Building)


Dr Mukulika Banerjee

Dr Mukulika Banerjee

Dr Yascha Mounk

Dr Yascha Mounk

Professor Lea Ypi

Professor Lea Ypi


Baroness Shafik

Baroness Shafik

In a world increasingly divided into those who defend and those who attack democratic systems, there is widespread consensus that democracy as a political system is under serious threat.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the recent changes in the US electoral system, the introduction of additional documentation in the UK and growing electoral authoritarianism in the world’s largest democracy India  – all indicate a distortion of democratic institutions as well of their democratic cultures.

This panel examines the future of democracy as a political system and explores the importance of cultivation of values and institutions in the preservation of democracy. 

Meet our speakers and chair  

Mukulika Banerjee (@MukulikaB) is Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Her new monograph Cultivating Democracy: Politics and citizenship in agrarian India ( OUP New York) was published in October 2021. This is an anthropological study of the relationship of formal political democracy and the cultivation of active citizenship in one particular rural setting in West Bengal, studied from 1998 to 2013. Her last book Why India Votes? (Routledge 2014), examined the reasons why despite varying odds, India’s voter graph continues to rise, making India the largest electoral democracy in the world. She is founding Series Editor of "Exploring the Political in South Asia" (Routledge), a platform for scholars to publish political-ethnographic studies on India.

Yascha Mounk (@Yascha_Mounk) (joining remotely) is a writer, academic, and public speaker known for his work on the rise of populism and the crisis of liberal democracy. A contributing editor at the Atlantic, where he has a regular column, his journalism has also appeared in the New Yorker and Harper’s, among other outlets. He is currently an Associate Professor of International Affairs at Johns Hopkins University and a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations. His most recent book, The People vs Democracy, was published by Harvard University Press in 2018. 

Lea Ypi (@lea_ypi) is Professor in Political Theory in the Department of Government at LSE and Adjunct Associate Professor in Philosophy at the Research School of Social Sciences, Australian National University. Before joining LSE, she was a Post-doctoral Prize Research Fellow at Nuffield College (Oxford) and a researcher at the European University Institute where she obtained her PhD. She has degrees in Philosophy and Literature from the University of Rome, La Sapienza, and has held visiting and research positions at Sciences Po, the University of Frankfurt, the Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin, the Australian National University and the Italian Institute for Historical Studies.

Minouche Shafik is Director of the London School of Economics and Political Science. Prior to this, she was Deputy Governor of the Bank of England. She is an alumna of LSE. Her new book, What We Owe Each Other: A New Social Contract, is out now. She is co-chair of the Economy 2030 Inquiry commission.

More about this event  

This event is part of the LSE Festival: How Do We Get to a Post-COVID World? running from Monday 13 to Saturday 18 June 2022, with a series of events exploring the practical steps we could be taking to shape a better world. 

The Department of Government (@LSEGovernment) at LSE is home to some of the most internationally respected experts in politics and government; producing influential research that has a global impact on policy, and delivering world-class teaching to our students.

Twitter hashtags for this event: #LSEFestival

A review of Lea Ypi's latest book Free: Coming of Age at the End of History and a Q and A with Dr Mukulika Banerjee is available on the LSE Review of Books blog.

Podcast & Video

A podcast of this event is available to download from The Future of Democracy.

A video of this event is available to watch at The Future of Democracy.

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