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The power of trust | LSE Festival

Hosted by LSE Festival: Power and Politics

In-person and online public event (Marshall Building)


Professor Charlie Beckett

Professor Charlie Beckett

Rafael Behr

Rafael Behr

Dr Laura Gilbert

Dr Laura Gilbert

Ros Taylor

Ros Taylor


Professor Neil Lee

Professor Neil Lee

Trust (in the media, in institutions, in politics and democracy) is widely reported to be in decline, but how important is it for a functioning society and why? What’s the relationship between trust and power? Our panel will consider whether and why trust matters, and how it could be restored. 

Meet our speakers and chair  

Charlie Beckett (@CharlieBeckett) is Professor of Practice at LSE and the founding director of Polis, the think-tank for research and debate around international journalism and society in the Department of Media and Communications at LSE. Charlie is leading the Polis Journalism AI project and was Lead Commissioner for the LSE Truth, Trust & Technology Commission (T3). 

Rafael Behr (@rafaelbehr) is a political columnist and leader writer for The Guardian. Prior to that he was political editor at the New Statesman and Chief Leader Writer at the Observer. He has also worked as a business reporter for the BBC and as a foreign correspondent for the Financial Times, based in the Baltic states, Moscow and other parts of the former Soviet Union. His work has appeared in the Times, the New York Times, the Irish Times and Prospect magazine. He is a regular commentator on BBC news, Sky, Times radio and a range of political podcasts. He is the author of Politics, a Survivor's Guide.  

Laura Gilbert (@statsArePower) is the director of 10DS, the data science and analytics team in Downing Street, director of the Incubator for Artificial Intelligence (i.AI), joint Chief Analyst for the Cabinet Office and SRO for the AI for Public Good program. Her teams provide fast-paced modelling and analysis to support policy making and delivery, deliver expert data and AI solutions into public services, and run a radical transformation agenda promoting the better use of evidence, data and technology in government decision making.  She also created and spearheads a broader program of innovation, digitisation and radical upskilling in central government called Evidence House. She holds a doctorate in Particle Physics and Computing, is Visiting Professor at LSE, and holds fellowships of the Institute of Physics and the Institute of Analytics. 

Ros Taylor (@rosamundmtaylor) is a journalist and contributing editor at Podmasters, where she presents the podcasts Oh God, What Now?, The Bunker, and Jam Tomorrow. She is also a freelance editor for Open Society Foundations and has worked for the BBC. Previously she was a senior journalist at the Guardian, research manager for the Truth, Trust & Technology Commission at LSE, the co-editor and co-author of The 2018 Democratic Audit, and edited LSE research on COVID and Brexit. Her book The Future of Trust is published by Melville House.   

Neil Lee (@ndrlee) is Professor of Economic Geography at LSE and chair of the LSE Festival Steering Group.

More about this event

This event is part of the LSE Festival: Power and Politics running from Monday 10 to Saturday 15 June 2024, with a series of events exploring how power and politics shape our world. 

Hashtag for this event: #LSEFestival

From time to time there are changes to event details so we strongly recommend that if you plan to attend this event you check back on this listing on the day of the event. 

How can I attend? Add to calendar

This event is part of the LSE Festival: Power and Politics. The event is free and open to all, but a ticket is required. The event will be hybrid, with an in-person audience and an online audience.

Register here for the in-person in event

If you would like to attend online, register you can register for all events at LSE Festival online events.

To find out more about Festival bookings, please visit the ticket information page or email

This event will be streamed live on YouTube

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