Articles on Democracy

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The 2014 Umbrella Revolution in Hong Kong against ‘Chinese-style democracy’ laid bare democracy’s contested meanings. Studio Incendo/flickr

If democracy is failing, why do so many lay claim to it?

Uncertainty is built into democracy, but we are seeing more talk of crisis and more attempts at redefinition. So where does this leave citizens who want to have a meaningful say in how they live?
In clinging to power, Nicolás Maduro, Hugo Chávez’s handpicked successor, is steering Venezuela’s once-rich democracy to autocracy. Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters

Is Democracy Dead or Alive? What democracy exactly are we supposed to nurture?

Democracy takes many forms, some of them democracy in name only. Confusion and misappropriation complicate the public struggle for the democracy to come, but this challenge is always unending.
Election workers count votes by the light of candles and a kerosene lamp at a polling station without electricity in the Yoff neighborhood of Dakar, Senegal in 2007. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

Empowering the powerless: Let’s end energy poverty

Distributed-energy technologies are a disruptive force that can improve the quality of life for the world's most disadvantaged and poor.
President of Ontario Federation of Labour Chris Buckley addresses protesters outside a Tim Hortons Franchise in Toronto last week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

Democracy, freedom and cheap stuff: Can we pay more for our coffee?

Do businesses have to act like businesses? Or could we pay slightly more for goods, like coffee, and recognize that stability for working people is essential to a robust economy.
Venezuela’s crisis has been terrible for years. But if President Maduro is re-elected, things could actually get worse. Marco Bello/Reuters

Why an election won’t topple Venezuela’s Maduro

The Venezuelan government has just announced that it will hold a presidential election by the end of April. Despite pervasive hunger and discontent, democracy still doesn't stand a chance.
While some are declaring that democracy has had its day, others see this as a time to develop more truly democratic ways of living. Gustav Klimt, Death and Life, 1910

Is Democracy Dead or Alive? Democracy has a future, if we rethink and remake it

Is it really time to eulogise democracy, or are we rather on the cusp of a new phase in its long and varied life?
Africa needs average economic growth of over 7% for several decades if it’s to reduce poverty and increase income levels. Shutterstock

What needs to be done to make Africa politically stable

Africa is still witnessing an increase in social turbulence, unrest and protest. Only rapid, inclusive economic growth combined with good governance can make the continent less volatile.
The U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency deleted — but later restored — key statistics on its web page about the percentage of Puerto Ricans living without drinking water and electricity. In this photo from October 2017, Roberto Figueroa Caballero sits in his wall-less home after Hurricane Maria devastated the island. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa, File)

Scientific information is the key to democracy

The U.S. government continues to wage a fight against scientific information. Without it, the public can do little to address environmental and economic inequality.
Giving workers a ‘voice’ is easy, and has already been proven effective as a management technique. shutterstock

The key to a vibrant democracy may well lie in your workplace

Employees whose bosses give them some discretion over their work tasks are significantly more likely to engage in political behaviours outside work.

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