WORKING VIRTUALLY UNTIL TRAVEL BECOMES POSSIBLE AGAIN
In collaboration with CFGS and EUCAnet.
Climate change has produced catastrophic visions of a global crisis unfolding before our eyes whose consequences will be as unforgivable as they will be irreversible. As the waters rise, the far right has seized upon this moment to move to the center of the global political stage. Such a moment calls for addressing the convergent political aspirations of those seeking to resist and subvert efforts to dismantle democratic institutions from within, locally as well as globally. Coming from diverse intellectual and personal backgrounds our working group shares a commitment to comparative analysis as a means toward illuminating the specificities of local conditions as well as historical conjunctures on scales that approach the global.
Increasingly, scholars and commentators have voiced concern over the rise of populist politics. A principal focus of this concern has been constitutionalism: the
processes, constraints, and foundational understandings of constitutional government. Populists appear to flout these processes, constraints, and understandings, or alternatively harness them to their ends. In response, critics accuse populists of undermining liberal democracy. These arguments frequently focus on the role of the courts in relation to the popularly elected branches of government. Are the courts frustrating the will of the people? Are the judges overstepping their role?
Youth climate justice activists – from the streets to the courts – have been changing the conversation about climate change at the local, national and global levels. Hear from youth activists and allies from movements in the UK and Turtle Island as they share their experiences with one another and discuss the ways forward, including potential legal actions at the national levels, drawing on the experience of 21 youth suing the US government for climate change (Juliana vs. US).
What are the major problems facing democracies? What are the connections between these problems? What are the democratic ways to resolve these problems and reconcile all affected by them?
The workshop brought together scholars who presented enlightening responses to these three questions from a wide variety of perspectives. They engaged in a comparative and critical dialogue oriented to reciprocal elucidation, mutual understanding and democratic ways forward.
Contemporary Western democracies suffer from a declining trust in the political process and massive disinformation in particular in social media. Yet democracy rests on the process of decision making mediated through procedures of free public deliberation. Experts from academia, media, and various civil society communities discuss the challenges that public debates and the public engagement of academics face with a view to the futures of democracy.