43 episodes

Since its origins, democracy has been a work in progress. Today, many question its resilience.

How to Fix Democracy, a collaboration of the Bertelsmann Foundation and Humanity in Action, explores practical solutions for how to address the increasing threats democracy faces. Host Andrew Keen interviews prominent international thinkers and practitioners of democracy. Their conversations are designed to provoke discussion and curiosity about the state and future of democracy across the globe.

How to Fix Democracy Bertelsmann Foundation

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Since its origins, democracy has been a work in progress. Today, many question its resilience.

How to Fix Democracy, a collaboration of the Bertelsmann Foundation and Humanity in Action, explores practical solutions for how to address the increasing threats democracy faces. Host Andrew Keen interviews prominent international thinkers and practitioners of democracy. Their conversations are designed to provoke discussion and curiosity about the state and future of democracy across the globe.

    Stephanie Kelton

    Stephanie Kelton

    Describing the deficit | Stephanie Kelton is a Professor of Economics and Public Policy at Stony Brook University focusing on monetary policy and public finance. In this interview, she explains modern monetary theory (MMT) and clarifies some of the myths surrounding spending deficits, especially concerning the U.S. federal government’s massive debt. MMT is a change in the way the government explains its deficit, Kelton says, and is important for politically justifying big expenditures. When it comes to the health of democracy, Kelton argues, fear of contributing to the deficit means the U.S. has not been able to enact the big policies to help those left behind.

    • 25 min
    Rebecca Henderson

    Rebecca Henderson

    Us later, not me now | Rebecca Henderson is the John and Natty McArthur University Professor at Harvard University Business School. In this interview, hosted by Andrew Keen, she explains how she has been re-imagining capitalism. Free markets, Professor Henderson argues, need to be balanced with free politics, mirroring what many others in How to Fix Democracy Season 2 have identified as a core linkage between unhealthy capitalism and damaging politics. There’s an immediacy and selfishness in politics and business now, she says, which reflects more of a “me now” instead of an “us later” mentality.

    • 25 min
    Gabriel Zucman

    Gabriel Zucman

    All about taxes | Gabriel Zucman is an Associate Professor of Economics and Director of the Stone Center on Wealth and Income Inequality at the University of California, Berkeley. In this interview, hosted by Andrew Keen, Professor Zucman discusses issues of taxation and tax havens. According to Professor Zucman, a major problem within free market capitalism is tax avoidance. He argues that in a globalized economy there should be new tools to ensure companies pay taxes where they make their profits.

    • 28 min
    Sir Paul Collier

    Sir Paul Collier

    Redistribute productivity | Sir Paul Collier is Professor of Economics and Public Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government and a Professorial Fellow of St Antony’s College, Oxford University. In this interview, hosted by Andrew Keen, Sir Paul Collier explains why he thinks the biggest problem of capitalism in the last two centuries in the US and UK has been the concentration of moral load-bearing. While in the past, derailments of capitalism have been remedied by families and firms, along with governments, all taking responsibility, nowadays, that burden has concentrated in the state. Decentralization of political and economic power can be a way to reverse this, and the key is re-skilling workers whose labor has become less and less valuable outside of the few major clusters of knowledge intensive firms.

    • 31 min
    Gideon Rachman

    Gideon Rachman

    Individual choice | Gideon Rachman is the chief foreign affairs columnist for the Financial Times. He was previously at the Economist for fifteen years, during which time he was a foreign correspondent in Brussels, Washington, and Bangkok, and editor of the business and Asia sections. In this interview with Andrew Keen, Rachman discusses how globalization has deepened conflict between capitalism and democracy. Individual choice is at the core of both capitalism and democracy, and so the two work better together than it may seem today, when anti-democratic, anti-globalist politics are emerging in many democratic, free market countries.

    • 25 min
    Richard D. Wolff

    Richard D. Wolff

    Richard D. Wolff is Professor of Economics Emeritus, University of Massachusetts, Amherst and a Visiting Professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, New York City. In this interview, host Andrew Keen and Professor Wolff discuss the definition of capitalism from the Marxist perspective. When the system of capitalism experiences dire crises, Wolff argues, it has been natural to question the nature of the system itself, just as the financial crises of the early 20th and 21st centuries have prompted reforms of capitalism to varying extents. Today, the path to better political democracy, says Wolff, lies in stronger economic democracy.

    • 26 min

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