democracy

Peak neoliberalism

Neoliberalism has become a ubiquitous term in popular and academic debates, used to describe a diverse and varied array of things. As a result, it has come to mean many different things to many different people. It is used as a concept to analyze organizational governance and restructuring, the marketization of organizational thinking and bureaucracy, the social reproduction of corporate managers, and the transformation of corporate governance. And much more besides. Neoliberalism’s increasing conceptual ubiquity has come at a significant price though.

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1 Apr 2019
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Issue Editors: Emil Husted, Martin Fredriksson, Mona Moufahim, and Justine Grønbæk Pors

Most contemporary analyses resist studying parties for what they obviously are: organizations. (Panebianco, 1988: 3).

As an organizational species, political parties seem to face impending extinction. No matter what yardstick we use to measure their vitality, political parties currently display an undeniable image of terminal crisis. Party membership is approaching rock bottom in most corners of the world, particularly in countries like France and the UK where less than two percent of the population are registered as rank and file (van Biezen et al., 2012). Similarly, voter turnout has plummeted worldwide since the middle of the twentieth century, currently reaching a level well below 70 percent (Solijonov, 2016). Voters' tendency to identify with specific parties is likewise declining due to the reconfiguration of class-consciousness and the emergence of more ‘liquid loyalties’ in the electorate (Ignazi, 2017:... more

20 May 2016

 

Accounts of neoliberalism have focused principally upon regimes of accumulation and their socio-economic conditions and consequences.  From outsourcing to de-industrialisation and privatised Keynesianism through to concerted and widespread attacks on labour, these shifts have been framed by commentators in terms of the ‘restoration of class power’. The epochal transformations of administrative, state and IFI structures and operations have, through the fetishistic mantra... more

Can democracy survive austerity?

Armin Schafer and Wolfgang Streeck, two scholars at the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies in Cologne, Germany, have edited a remarkable volume that attempts to address a political-economic touchstone of modern democratic-capitalism: how to reconcile democratic political processes with the increasing governance of global economic life by economic institutions – corporate and transnational governmental – that are politically nonresponsive to the demands of ordinary citizens and which are dedicated to often unpopular economic policies of austerity (cf. Edsall, 2012).

‘Why did it work this time?’ David Graeber on Occupy Wall Street

It has been two years since Occupy emerged on the global scene, inspired by an on-going wave of protest movements and upheavals. Like its predecessors, the movement was met with great skepticism – not least by many self-acclaimed leftist academics and journalists. How could a political movement, one objection went, be of any significance and endurance if it failed or refused to produce a clear, univocal agenda? How could it affect society or politics beyond the border of its own tent camp?

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